(Elisha ben Abuyah)
And Elijah took Twelve stones, according to the number of the sons of Jacob, unto whom the Word of the Lord came, saying, Israel shall be thy name...(1 Kings 18:31).
And when the sons of the prophets...saw him, they said, The spirit of Elijah doth rest on Elisha. And they came to meet him, and bowed themselves to the ground before him...(2 Kings 2:15).
But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias (Elijah), when the heavens were shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land.
And many lepers were in Israel in the days of Eliseus (Elisha) the prophet, and none of them were cleansed saving Namaan the Syrian.
And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were full of wrath...(Luke 4:25-28).
IS TODAY BEGINNING OF THE END?
Some Predict Rapture, and Many Aren't Taking Any Chances
HUNTINGTON, WEST VIRGINIA, September 11, 1988__Today, the dawn of what some say may be the beginning of the end, some believers are following the motto: Be Prepared. If the local believers have calculated correctly, Jesus Christ will arrive to take them to heaven and leave behind the heathen, an event they call the Rapture. If not today, they predict, he'll be here at least by Tuesday evening.
One area church has experienced a surge in baptisms in preparation for Sept. 11-13, the days during which writer Ed Whisenant predicts the apocalypse will start. "This is not a cult about the end of the world. We are not marching around with placards," the Rev. Edwin S. Harper said. "If you had this information, it would be foolish not to do anything about it--my position is one of caution." Harper's Staunton Street Apostolic Church ran a full page ad in the Huntington-Dispatch warning of the Rapture. He said that although the Bible states no one can know the exact date, "it only makes sense to be prepared."
Not only will there be a physical exodus from the earth, the Bible says, but the dead who placed their faith in Christ as Savior during their lifetime will rise from their graves before seven years of war, pestilence and disease begin, Harper said...
"I'm not knocking their belief," said Dr. E.S. Hanrahan, dean of the College of Science at Marshall University, "the Bible is a marvelous book, but it is subject to interpretation." Then why are so many people treating this latest date so seriously? "It's just a sign of our times--people are looking for reassurance that it isn't going to happen...We have the capability to the end the world now--with nuclear war--and we've been living with that for a long time," Hanrahan said.
Whisenant's booklet, distributed by the World Bible Society...is in two parts titled "On Borrowed Time," and "88 Reasons Why the Rapture Could be in 1988." In his booklet, Whisenant says he used mathematics, the Bible and other things to arrive at the date of the beginning of the end...Harper said he learned the importance of today's date in 1975, "when it became very apparent we were coming very close to the 40th anniversary of Israel becoming a nation."...In his booklet, Whisenant points out that Rosh Hashana--the Jewish New Year--will be celebrated this year from sunset September 11 to sunset September 13, the days he predicted for the Rapture...
But as Marshall astronomer Nicholas Orsini points out..."as for today, nothing is going to happen. There is nothing in the heavens that is ominous at this time...But if it's divine intervention, it's beyond me to predict it." Monty Fowler, The Huntington Herald-Dispatch.
SYMBOLIC MEANING TO RAPTURE TEACHING.
LETTER TO THE EDITOR__If someone could grab the church by the shoulders and shake some correct interpretation into it, and its fixation with the literal word out of it, and if one could also shake it out of the garments of intellectual pride in which it is clothed, it might learn how to interpret the meaning of the event it is calling "the Rapture." It might learn what it means to be "caught up." Caught up to what? And to where? Into the Air, Paul says at 1 Thessalonians 4:17. But what does he mean? Paul is a son of the Torah, a child of the Prophets. He was no foreigner to the symbolic language employed by those ancients, and he employs it here when he paraphrases Moses" "Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, AND HOW I BARE YOU ON EAGLE'S WINGS, AND BROUGHT YOU UNTO MYSELF." (Exodus 19:4).
The children of Israel did not "disappear" from the earth in those times, but they were "caught up" to God. The prophets tell us that once again will the Spirit of God be poured out upon all flesh (Joel 2:28), and Paul is describing in symbolic language how the spirit in man rises up to meet it. He says the same at 2 Corinthians 12 and 13, where he describes his own "rapture" to the Third Heaven, where he saw and heard things that were then unlawful to reveal. But he did not leave the earth in the physical sense; it was his mind that was caught up. It was caught up into another dimension, to a higher way of understanding the mystery of the Presence of God in the world. The apocryphal Book of Enoch tells us that on the Third Heaven is the Tree of Life. Besides discovering his own exalted place on the World Tree (in the historical scheme of things), Paul's mind was carried into the future, into our times, and to the words: "To them that overcome will I give to eat of the Tree of Life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God." (Revelation 2:7). He went on a metaphysical journey into the heavens of human perception.
To discover the meaning of it, we, like Paul, must abandon our old affections, and out literal interpretations, and yield ourselves to the Spirit that is overshadowing our age. Then we might discover that a rapture is indeed happening, and that the Messiahs are indeed being manifest in this holy season of the Seventh Month. M.M. Huntington,
One could never realize as a dreamy youth (or even as an intense and serious youth as Paul must have been), that they were in pursuit of a Holy Grail (that they were on some pathway of initiation), or even that such an object or mystery actually existed outside of the movies and picture books, much less than that it was at one time the central object of Christian contemplation, until they began to be awakened to it later in life, or perhaps when they suddenly looked around and found themselves walking the hallways of the Grail Castle itself. (It can happen in an instant, as it did with Paul. But even then, the pathways leading up to such an experience are without doubt life-long, deeply personal and spiritually complex). One religious journal describes it in terms of (suddenly) entering the realm of the Mythosphere. (And one can definetly appear to others as finally and completely self deluded after a visit to this realm, as it was written by so many of Paul). Once inside, if one's thoughts are so oriented, one looks around and finds that the Grail Castle and the Temple structure (Solomon's Temple), are actually one and the same. The mind sees that these two have been built into one another, out of the same building blocks of enlightenment as the Buddhist teachers call them...
But one could not have planned to visit it. (Those who set out in search of it did not find it, yet many, even without knowing it yet, are already there, wandering around the passageways. It is illusive that way). One can only look backwards in time as they awaken, to see how they got there, and marvel at it all. It is as if doorways (or heavens) began to open in the chambers and hallways of reality, expanding and transforming one's sense of it as it were. One also finds, however, that there are stairways in this Castle, some of them leading upwards, but some of them leading downwards as well. Which is why one must be prepared, completely "unknowingly," in every normal (sane, non-psychotic) way before they enter. It is no place for those who are paranoid, or who are prone to, or who actually suffer spiritual delusions, particularly messianic ones, because some of these are twisted passageways indeed; they lead not only to the towers but also through the dungeons (of one's own mind that is). One must tread these passageways in a state of grace, and alone. They must also have come to be assured within themselves that if they got trapped somewhere along the way they had but to call out--to the Ones whose House it is, and that they would be rescued; and that they would not be punished for having gone that way and gotten lost. And they must learn that they can also count on those others--of all things, those sisters and brothers that they didn't even know they had--who they find treading these passageways also. And, so assured, believing all things, as Paul wrote, that if they should at all encounter that Dragon that they have been told dwells somewhere deep down in the abyss of this Castle, that they have been equipped with all the spiritual weapons that are necessary to overcome it (ones they must have also somehow gathered along the way...Ephesians 6:11-17).
In one's arsenal must also be those full measures of Faith and Courage (as well as Charity, see 1 Corinthians 13), for without these one cannot hope to break the Dragon's power, the fear of him, and the threats and accusations that he breathes, and the condemnations that he conjures up. For fear alone could keep a soul from its own state of self-realization. But if fear turned into disbelief, these together would very definetly keep a soul from accepting the almost unbeliveable truth of its own unfolding revelations and intuitions (see Zechariah 3:1). And to draw back afterwards is worse. The Great Serpent (the chief of all devils--Ravana, the Ten-headed demon in the Ramayana, and Mara to the Buddhists, whom the Buddha defeated by simply applying one finger gently to the ground beneath himself, establishing himself at his own center, at his own holy place of spiritual causation...see Luke 11:20)--would get the ultimate victory. The critical conjunction of the "Three Suns" (or in Paul's case the "Three Moons") would pass, and there would be no healing, no proper diffusion of the Light, no fulfilling of the scriptures, and no meaning or conclusion to history...
But who can resist God's will? We realize that every soul's path has been laid out by God (understand Romans, chapter 8, even the pathways of Darkness for the children of Darkness). For the children of Light, however, every path, and every passageway, and every experience, leads inwards, through the hallways and chambers of the mind, and eventually to the great central chamber of Reality, to the grand and exquisite and greatly lit Throne Room of the Castle itself. Upon arriving we discover the Divine Mother there, sitting on Her Throne right next to the Heavenly Father. We see that these two, the Masters of Myth and Illusion themselves, are ONE. They have always been ONE. And we realize that it was She (without whom we could have known nothing of the Father), along with Her handmaidens, who was the custodian of the Holy Grail all along; and that it was She who had the Sword Excalibur in Her own possession all this time as well. And that it is She who has preserved these treasures for those who love Her and who have pursued Her into these times--(It is Divine Wisdom that we speak of). And finding the Two of them there, Their powers complimenatry of the other (She, the Shekinah, the great Muse of the West now, and He the terrible specter of the Powers of the East), we come to understand what They are now bringing to pass in the Earth--a shift in consciousness from the realm of myth to the sphere of reality, from the Seventh sefira on the Tree of Life to the Eighth.
And we also come to understand how, here at this end of the age--in contrast to the conditions that existed at the beginning of this age, when many of the Essenes (but not all), and even Paul himself, were given to the celibate life--this same journey into the heavens of human comprehension could only have been accomplished in the company and with the help of a Soulmate (where the two are made together in the image of God that is), and in the context of family and children, in the balance between this world and the other, in the restraints of love, and in those heartaches and struggles that purify the soul, in the loving and wonderful confusions of Life itself. (An inquiring heart is the pathway to the Castle, Love is the key, Belief is the chain upon which the key hangs, and only Faith can turn the key). But one also finds, that even after discovering their way to the castle, that they must leave it behind (along with every other strong attatchment to the world beyond, believing, however, that one could never lose those things which are most precious and eternal, but will gain them back again). They must return to those who are laboring in the darkness of this world:
And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey...(Revelation 10:8-10; Ezekiel 2:9 to 3:1-3).
Contemplating the oracles (the little book is the key to unlocking them and all their present meanings), inquiring into the ways in which the idea of Messiah (or Messiahs) now attends them in our time...
...one will have also found themself thinking back and forth along those lines on the Oracle which lead from the time of Aaron and Moses into the first centuries of this age (the time of John the Baptist and Paul), and finally into the mystery of our own times, and, as we have already alluded, into the meaning of Paul's doctrine concerning the state of marriage at 1 Corinthians 7; for, as we shall come to see, Paul knew that every perfected soul would eventually be united with its own soulmate in the fulness of time, either in this world or the world to come. With Paul, the Little One, it would happen in this world, and in this present lifetime as it is written: The kingdom of heaven is like unto a great king who made a marriage for his son. (Matthew 22:1-3; Joel 2:15,16). Oh mystery of mysteries; Paul is this son. (Galatians 1:15,16).
In the journey to understand these things one might have also found themself one day staring from the tip of Manhatten Island, out across New York Harbor, perhaps at the (then) silent profile of Ellis Island. They might have begun to experience the Mist (the Oceanic Spirit), and suddenly have felt the very history of Western civilization itself lapping at the concrete shore beneath their feet. With a terrible feeling of insignificance...and yet, somehow feeling very connected to it all, one might in a moment of time have sensed the whole of Divine reality unfolding before their very eyes. One might have also, in such a moment of elevation, sensed the intricate meaning, not only of every human event but of every spoken word, of every written word, of every song, of every poem (perhaps the meaning of poetry itself--does it not, along with all the other heavenly disciplines, open up the consciousness and say to the soul what other forms of words cannot?):
Give thanks unto the Lord, for They are good; for Their mercy endureth forever. (They are One).
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom They have redeemed from the hand of the enemy.
And gathered them out of the lands, from the East, and from the West, from the North, and from the South...
And They led them forth by the right way, that they might go to the city of Habitation...
They sent Their Word and They healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.
Oh that men would praise the Lord for Their goodness, and for Their wonderful works to the children of men.
And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare Their works with rejoicing.
They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters;
THESE SEE THE WORKS OF THE LORD, AND THEIR WONDERS IN THE DEEP... (Psalms 106 and 107).
"Sail...sail thy best, ship of Democracy! Of value is thy freight, tis not the Present only, The Past is also stored in thee!
Thou holdest not the venture of thyself alone, Not of the Western continent alone; Earth's resume entire floats on thy keel, O ship, Is steadied by thy spars.
With thee Time voyages in trust, The antecedent nations sink or swim with thee, With all their ancient struggles, martyrs, heroes, epic wars.
Thou bearest the other continents: Theirs, theirs as much as thine, The destination--port triumphant;
Steer then with good strong hand and wary eye, O helmsman, Thou carriest great companions, Venerable priestly Asia sails with thee this day...
How can I pierce the impenetrable blank of the future? I feel thy ominous greatness, Evil as well as good;
I watch thee, advancing, absorbing the present, Transcending the past; I see thy light lighting, And thy shadow shadowing, As if the entire globe.
But I do not undertake to define thee. Hardly to comprehend thee." Walt Whitman.
Seemingly sweet child in your youth,
You do not deceive knowing eyes.
Your ancient paths lead to my house,
I've watched you build up, and break down.
Your towers do not reach the sky, They never will.
You've crossed the mighty sea, withstood the roaring floods.
As a lady in waiting calling her lovers, You bid us come in, but the pit is near
Impossible to climb out of again.
You, all decked out in your flashes of color,
Neon signs, prosperity, religion, and humanity;
Though you think that time has been your stronghold,
For you have lasted through the ages;
You will never be the same again,
For Time reveals all things. N. Elizabeth Guaracci.
One, indeed, might find themselves wandering the streets of Great Babylon, the lower East Side, and over the bridge to Brooklyn. The most magnificent view of the City can be had from the center of the Williamsburg bridge. See it, number the towers thereof, so that ye may tell it to the generations after you... (Psalm 48:12).
Acts 13:39-41 (KJV); Habakkuk, chapter 1.
Betty Smith wrote a book entitled A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. She called this Tree the Tree of Heaven. One might also discover in the pages of another novel, The Chosen, something of the lives of those who live just on the other side of this bridge, and something of the nature of the Tzaddiq, and the way in which those words are fulfilled in our time which say...
Then these men were bound in their Coats, their Hosen, and their Hats, and their Other Garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. (See 1 Peter 4:12,13).
And these Three men (who dwell in the ultra-orthodox communities of Williamsburg, Crown Heights, and Borough Park), fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.
Then Nebuchadnezzar the king (of Babylon) was astonied, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counselors, Did not we cast three men bound in the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True O king.
He answered and said, Lo, I see Four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and THE FORM OF THE FOURTH IS LIKE THE SON OF GOD. (See chapter 5 of this work)...(Daniel 3:21-25).
With such strange ideas, and such strange connections forming in our minds our thoughts are carried away, from the harbor of the Great City, across to Europe, and to all of the events that have emanated into the consciousness of the world from that place in the 20th century. We are taken with the realization that these things have actually happened in our lifetime, before our very eyes. We are taken with the terrible and Divine reality of it all. We wonder what connections there could be between these events and all the other words of the prophets. Our minds are drawn to those at Matthew 24 or Luke 21. We do not only see Jews (the children of Judah), but many others of the children of Israel, pouring out of Europe to America in these times (Jeremiah 23), to be joined with those other children of Israel who were already here and those who had come another way...(compare Revelation, chapter 7, and Exodus 19:4-11)...
O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted...(Isaiah 54:11; Luke 6:20-49).
We see Jews in haste, making their way out of Europe to the East as well. (Isaiah 28:16-19). It is "Ephraim (Zionism) going backwards." (Open the Book of Hosea at the dawn of the 20th century. Please see Chapter 10). Being immersed in these things now, our minds scan the landscape of the 19th century, and those ominous events that led to the judgment wars of the 20th century and to this holocaust in Europe (and this second great Jewish Diaspora away from the center of its own mysteries). One might even see Napoleon himself bestriding the continent, in every way an image of the Assyrian kings of old; and feel the weight of his decrees upon the Jews of Europe and throughout the Pale of Settlement (Isaiah 32 to 37). One might have spent hours in a copy of the Tales of the Hasidic Masters, and in the many works of the Kabbalah that are available now, and discovered a continuity between these stories and the spirit of the early (Jewish) church that disappeared into the historic background as it were in the time of Christ, along with its Merkabah visions, its intentional secrecy, its pious ways and devotion to the Law, and its understanding of the words: ...This Child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel, and for a sign which shall be spoken against. (Luke 2:34)...
"The country was inundated with cross-currents of Judaisms in strife with one another. Intermingled with the stern morality of Judaism were foreign currents--the Zoroastrian resurrection beliefs, pagan fertility rites, Adonis and Osiris dying-son cults, Oriental mysticism, a hodgpodge of beliefs. In Christianity all these inchoate yearnings, all these dissident opinions, found a unification. Christianity took the best of these resurrection cults, dying-son beliefs, mysticism, myths, rites, and it forged them into a new, lofty religion of redemption for man and promise of heaven.
In the same way, the new religion of Hasidism grew out of similar soil--political oppression, social unrest, Sabbatean messiah worship, Frankist sex rites, mystic cults, revelation, penance. Hasidism transcended all this in the way Christianity had transcended the Oriental religious cults. Hasidism forged all the yearnings of the people into a new stream of Judaism, sloughing off the obscene, the gross, the sexual in Sabbateanism and Frankism, leaving only the essence of a new religious movement which tried to exalt the spirit. But just as Christianity in its early forms was unrealistic in its attitude toward the state (the author says), so early Hasidism was unrealistic in its attitude toward the dual role man has to play on earth--his role in relation to state, and his role in relation to God. (Both early Christianity and early Hasidism were walking in the ways of the same Spirit, in the expressed precepts of the Law and the Prophets as they were being revealed in their individual times by the Spirit..see Matthew 5:17-20).
Hasidism was not a simple thing; it was a complex syndrome. It was the triumph of ignorance over knowledge. The Talmud said that no ignorant man could be pious. Hasidism preached the reverse. It affirmed the Jewish spirit without the Jewish tradition. It created its own tradition by proclaiming itself more Jewish than Jewishness itself. Hasidism was strength through joy, an affirmation of the ecstatic, not the ecstasy of the senses as with the Frankists but with the ecstasy of knowing God. In one fell swoop, Bal Shem Tov turned weakness into strength, defeat into triumph. Just as Jesus had opposed the Pharisee intellectuals, so Bal Shem Tov opposed the Talmudic intellectuals. Hasidism and early Christianity were kindred spirits.
Israel ben Eliezer, known by his disciples as Bal Shem Tov (Master of the Good Name), the founder of Hasidism, was born about 1700 in a region of the Ukraine (Edom). His life, as outlined by his disciples, remarkably paralleled that of Jesus. An angel appeared to Bal Shem Tov's parents, when they were at an advanced age. God, said the angel, was going to bless them with a son in their old age, even as He had blessed Abraham and Sarah, and this son would carry the message of the Lord to man on earth.
Bal Shem Tov's parents, who conceived him late in their lives, died early in his. When he was six years old, the elders of the community, as required by the Talmud, gave him a free education. His early manhood was spent in the wilderness, in utter poverty, performing miracles which his disciples speak of with wonder even today, such as healing the sick by touching him, walking across deep water, causing a tree to burn just by looking at it, banishing a ghost by uttering the secret 'Name.' Once he intervened with the populace of a town which had turned against a prostitute. Bal Shem Tov touched her, whereupon she became whole and saintly. He had direct intercession with God in heaven. One word from him could release a tortured soul from hell. Wherever he went a radiance hovered over him.
This is the account of his disciples. Others are less kind. One dissenting school holds that Bal Shem Tov was lazy and stupid, an irresponsible failure who succeeded in nothing he undertook, who was fired from every job he ever held. His disciples, again, aver that actually Bal Shem Tov slept days because he secretly studied nights, that he deliberately created an impression as a ne'er-do-well until God revealed the time for him to announce who he really was. This Bal Shem Tov did at age forty-two.
Bal Shem Tov wrote (almost) nothing, and we are dependent upon his disciples for what he did say. Most of it is preserved, as in the case with Jesus, in allegories and parables. When Bal Shem Tov died in 1760, he had about 100,000 adherents. At its high point Hasidism may have embraced half the Jews of Eastern Europe." (I believe the title of this book is "The Concise History of the Jews," a chapter entitled "Kabala and Kinnanhorra," pp.280-281).
From these events our thoughts flow further backwards, to the period of the Renaissance and the Reformation. (Re)open the Books of Samuel, and the Books of Proverbs and Ecclesiastes at this time. Compare them to those events that were literally taking place in the world, and which were ready to come to pass. See the Great Circle of Genesis taking shape, preparing to complete itself. See the universal, scientific, metaphysical, and psycho-historical dimensions of the Oracle preparing to assert themselves upon the life of the Planet, and upon the mind of Western man in particular. For it is Western man's particular purpose to bring heaven down to earth. Thus we study those times in light of the oracles. See good and evil preparing now to come to their mutual states of perfection, side by side as it is written: Let them grow together...
"It would be a mistake to suppose that the writers of the Scrolls and the men of Qumran were inspired only by recollections of things past or that they chose their way of life simply because they were unsettled by political turbulence or disgusted by the venality of the Jerusalmitan priests. They were swept also by other winds. One of these was a widespread and well-attested contemporary belief that a great cycle of the ages was about to complete its revolution. This belief was based on a conception, which can in fact be traced to remote Indian antiquity, that existence consists not in linear progressive development--that is, in history--but in a constant cyclic repetition of primordial and archetypal events. When major upheavels occurred, it was promptly supposed that the cycle was nearing its end, that the Great Year was at hand, and that cosmos was about to revert to chaos. The primal elements, restrained and regulated at the beginning of the world, would again be unleashed; all things would dissolve in an overwhelming deluge or be burned in that everlasting fire which rages in the depths of the earth. THEN THE CYCLE WOULD BEGIN AGAIN; A NEW WORLD WOULD BE BROUGHT TO BIRTH." The Dead Sea Scriptures, by Theodor H. Gaster, p.8.
Michael O. Wise, in his The First Messiah, Investigating the Savior Before Christ, asks: "But what, precisely, did Judah (a name he applied to the first, but otherwise unidentified Teacher of Righteousness), mean by the phrase wondrous mysteries?" :
"The work is sometimes called after one of its recurrent phrases, 'The Secret of the Way Things Are,' and seven copies of it have emerged from the caves of the Dead Sea. Like the Sermon on the Mount in the New Testament, 'The Secret of the Way Things Are' issues ethical instructions for the imminent end of the age. In the shadow of this impending apocalypse, the work is much concerned with God's foreordained timetable. Its author urges the reader to 'learn the secret of the way things are, the weight of eras.' He declares that God 'has put into my heart true knowledge and understanding'--the result, he intimates, 'of the vision I have seen.'...
Seek these things with longing at all times; give careful thought to all their effects, and then you will experience (His eternal) glory, His wondrous mysteries and His divine wonders. By knowing the times, you are one who understands the best way to act.
FOR THE DECREE ENGRAVED IN ADAVANCE IS COMING. Every time of punishment has been inscribed. Indeed, what has been decreed is engraved for God in stone, concerning all the sins of the children of Seth. (We are back again in this narrative at the time of Adam and their immediate descendants). A book of remembrance stands written before Him, accessible to those who keep His words; and that book of remembrance contains the vision of meditation.
God bequeathed the meditation to Enosh by spiritual perception, because his nature was patterned after the holy angels. Otherwise He has not given meditation to those of a fleshly nature, FOR THEY DO NOT KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GOOD AND EVIL ACCORDING TO THE SPIRITUAL LAW.
This passage, with its sharply drawn distinction between 'the spirit' and 'the flesh,' almost sounds like something the apostle Paul could have written. Occasionally what the author intended to say is obscure, but the general movement of his thought is clear. He describes a heavenly book, open before God. People with proper spiritual cultivation can 'read' it by meditation. (Please compare 1 Corinthians 2:6-16. KJV).
Through meditation the initiate seeks a particular vision. WE HAVE THUS ENTERED THE REALM OF MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE, OF ESOTERIC REVELATION. THE VISION FOCUSES ON THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE TIMES--THAT IS, THE PREDESTINED COURSE OF HISTORY. The content of the book is one of God's 'wondrous mysteries.' Somehow the initiate can experience the mysteries. THAT EXPERIENCE ALSO INVOLVES THE GLORY OF GOD, and--whether in a concrete or abstract sense--God's 'divine wonders.'
The writer goes on to say that this book is immensely old--older, by far, than the law of Moses. Given by divine revelation in the days of the patriarch Seth, knowledge of it was passed on to later generations, but not in writing. But rather it was by 'spiritual perception,' beginning with Seth's son Enosh..." The First Messiah, pp.52-54.
"Before the time of the Bal Shem Tov--so they say--a wonderworking man by the name of Adam lived, no one knows just where, but it was probably IN THE IMPERIAL CITY OF VIENNA. Like the succession of wonderworking men before him, Adam was called Baal Shem, that is Master of the Name, because he knew the secret, full name of God, and could say it in such a way that--with its help--he was able to effect strange things and especially to heal men body and soul. When this man knew he was about to die, he did not know to whom to leave the age-old writings from which he had learned his secrets, the writings which were handed down from Abraham...While his own son was a man both learned and devout, he was not worthy of a heritage such as this. And so Adam, in his dream, asked Heaven what he should do and was told to have the writings given to Rabbi Israel ben Eliezer...who would then be fourteen years old." The Tales of the Hasidim, Early Masters, by Martin Buber, pp.37-38.
Of course the truth of it all lies not only in those things that were hidden at the very center of the Great Circle, but in the expanding structure of the Circle itself, in the infinite value of Pi, in the combination and relationship between straight lines and the great bending of psychological Time and historic Space, in the return to Eden and to the Roots of the Universal World Tree. Of the Forty Jubilees between the time of Christ and our own time, these, from the time of the Reformation on, will be the last Ten (or the last 10 X 49 = 490 years of this era)--and it is for this very reason Heaven decreed Ten days between the Blowing of the Trumpets in the New Moon of the Seventh Month and the Day of Atonement, to remind us of these final times. (See Leviticus 23:27 and the text named "The Last Jubilee" in the early edition of The Dead Sea Scriptures by Theodor H. Gaster, or the chapter in the Addendum to this work entitled "The Seventh Month"):
From 1492 unto 1975 is 483 (or 69 X 7) years
Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem (the Higher Jerusalem) unto the Messiah the Prince shall be Seven weeks, and Threescore and Two weeks (for a total of 69 X 7 symbolic weeks): the street shalt be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times...(Daniel 9:24-26).
See people from every nation on earth preparing to be pulled together into this great vortex of historical events--into this Circle forming inside of a Circle. God is, of course, imminently and majestically Present in the affairs of all the nations that lie outside this inner Circle--outside of the Commonwealth of Israel, outside of the lives of those who were about to overwhelm this Circle with their own wonderful diversities. Without these other peoples and nations there is no redemption in Israel, no deliverance in the earth. Those, however, who have swelled this inner Circle (all those--both Jew and Gentile alike--who are destined to rise up and inherit the age-to-come), will have learned at last to recognize and resist the most peculiar (and most subtle) form of wickedness that exists, that most deceptive form of Darkness that is coming to perfection in no other place on earth than America. The American ethos, as opposed to the ethos of the Universal Nation of Israel, stands in dire confrontation with the words: If Christ has set you free, you are free indeed:
FASCISM IN AMERICA
"What emerges from this study? Above all, I suggest, the conclusion that Fascism is nothing but monopoly capitalism imposing its will on those masses whom it has deliberately transformed into slaves...a partnership between monopoly capitalism and the Nazi Party in which that supreme coercive power which is of the state's essence is used to compel obedience to the new system...
There is no reason to suppose that any nation is so inescapably wedded to democracy as to be free from the dangers of Fascism. Professor Brady shows how profound are Fascist tendencies in the United States...
The lesson of all foreign experience is that the governing classs will not permit the use of democratic institutions to abrogate its economic privleges. So long as these institutions do not interfere with the basic structure of Capitalism, they are respected. But so soon as they are used to attempt a fundamental change in the incidence of economic power, faith in the validity of democratic institutions is rapidly undermined. Indeed, the experience of Western Europe makes it plain that the attempt need only be potential...
The regime which the Nazis proceeded to establish is fairly described, by the nature of the major interests which sponsered it, as a dictatorship of monopoly capitalism. Its 'fascism' is that of business enterprise organized on a monopoly basis, and in full command of all the military, police, legal, and propaganda power of the state...
(In its attempt)...It must divert the gaze of the masses from spiritual to material things." The Spirit and Structure of German Fascism, by Robert Brady.
...And they will have learned in the process that they are not only being called to recognize the Presence of God in all the other peoples of the earth, and God's Most Terrible Glory in all of the present events of the earth, but that God has also been preparing Israel (not that nation in the Middle East, but the true universal Israel), to reassume its role as servant to the other nations of the world. It will be seen as the vast energies and talents of the Western world are turned after the judgments of this age toward the service of the earth and all of Her peoples...understand Revelation 22:1,2). (It will be seen as the office of Messiah, and the name D.V.D. through which they shall reign, is passed on through spiritual selection to every other family and race of humanity on earth, as the Circle expands to encompass not only this world but the world to come, and not only this people but all the peoples of the earth).
Our thoughts, however, are drifting even further backwards, into the Darkness of the Middle Ages and to the atrocities of those Feudal times (still keeping that place in the center of the Oracle as our focus). There is a Remnant there too, holding forth against the powers of Darkness from both sides of the Oracle, the Christian side and the Jewish side. (Or more precisely, the Male side and the Female side). We see the doctrines of the Kabbalah beginning to emerge from those places where they have laid hidden for a thousand years. They will shape much of the pattern of future Jewish and Christian thought...
"According to the Zohar, the Messiah dwells in the Garden of Eden in a special palace, called 'kan zippor (the bird's nest)' (Note the popular images of the two birds of Paradise, like cherubim, always found together either under or upon the branches of the Tree of Life), and he will first be revealed in Upper Galilee. Some believed that the soul of the Messiah had not suffered transmigration, but was 'new,' while others contended that it was the soul of Adam which had previously transmigrated to King David. The letters of Adam (alef, dalet, mem) refer to Adam, David, and the Messiah--a 'notarikon' found from the end of the 13th century. There is possibly some Christian influence here because, according to Paul, Adam, the first man, corresponds to Jesus, 'the last man' (Rom.5:17). Descriptions of redemption in the Zohar follow in the footsteps of the Midrashim with the addition of some points and certain changes in theme. The redemption will be a miracle, and all that accompanies it miraculous (the stars sparkling and falling, the wars of the end time, the fall of the Pope, who is called symbolically in the Zohar 'the priest of On'). The idea of the pangs of redemption is greatly stressed, and the condition of Israel on the eve of redemption is pictured in terms which reflect the historical conditions of the 13th century...However, in the later Kabbalah (of Moses Cordovero and Isaac Luria) such ideas declined. On the other hand, the mystical basis of redemption was emphasized--the basis that developed from the time of Nahmanides and his school which centered on the midrashic view that redemption would be a return to that perfection which was sullied by the sin of Adam and Eve. It would not be something entirely new, but a restoration, or a renewal. Creation at the time of redemption would assume the form that was intended from the beginning by the Divine Mind. Only at the redemption there would be a revelation of the original nature of Creation which has become obscured or impaired in this world." Kabbalah, by Gershom Scholem, p.335.
As we reach further backwards our minds pass through a vail of sorts in human historical consciousness. We are approaching the mythical, or aggadic period. We sense a corresponding explosion of Light and Darkness emanating from the East, as the forces of Islam flow out of Arabia onto the plain of human events. They come fulfilling the words:
His Glory is like the firstling of His bullock, and His Horns are like the horns of Unicorns (interpreted Allah--Singular): with them He shall push the people together to the ends of the earth: and they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thousands of Manasseh...(Deuteronomy 33:17).
Islam will reflect in itself the same criteria, the same mixture of light and darkness, the same level of violence and wickedness, the same mixture of truth and error, the same propensity for spiritual insight and spiritual ignorance (literalism) as the greater world around it. Like Judaism and Christianity, Islam will also produce its own spiritual Remnant, its own branch of spiritual adepts, all of whom will merge together in the last day--for they will all see eye-to-eye-to-eye. (Open the very first chapter, or Sura of the Holy Qur'an. Follow those Seven verses out of the East to the place named Endurance in the West. Open the second Sura entitled The Cow in light of the words at Malachi, chapter 4. And then open the remaining chapters of the Holy Qur'an, also in light of all the Signs of God. See that the religion of Islam, along with Judaism and Christianity, must come to its fulfillment here in the West as well. Also see that not only is the Dark side of Islam in the East a reflection of the Dark side of Christianity in the West, but also how the literal elements, the language and the tenor of the Qur'an, which God has employed as a spur to rile up the natural, worldly, as well as the darkened hearts of the sons of Darkness in the East, are literally a judgment against Islam itself. The Qur'an is to Islam, as the Law and the Prophets are to Judaeo-Christianity in the West--an indictment. We explore these things in later chapters).
We arrive now at a different kind of pre-historical period, not one in which we can find no written accounts (the age is full of written accounts), but one in which much of what was written was also mixed and colored by the religious imagination. This does not mean that these accounts do not reflect a certain kind of reality, or that they were not historically true (for the truth of things by this time had already committed itself to an aoggadic realm, the realm that would become for us in our time the stuff of myths and legends). But because the authors of these works had a license to reach up into the spiritual realm to add what was apocryphal or supernatural to their own historical narratives, we must not read these narratives, or dismiss them, or hold them to the same criteria as we would historical works closer to our own time. We must read them with the same vivid imagination with which they were written; being aware, of course, that the further in time such extra-canonical works are from the source of the Mystery they relate, the more prone they are to personal deduction and speculation, interpolation, and religious bias. Which does not mean the Divine Spirit was not abroad in the land, inspiring those times. She can still be found. It was Her mysteries, however, that were in occultation. These She was withholding from the children of Darkness. The truly religious were living by Faith now, not by Daat, or direct Gnosis (Knowledge).
This is also not to say that there were not works of an (almost, somewhat), purely historical character to be found in these times. The writings of the Ante and Post Nicean Church Fathers are to be found (as well as those of the Greek and Roman historians, Herodotus, Polybius, Strabo, Tacitus, Pliney, Cassius Dio among them, and the invaluable works of Philo and Josephus). And there are the vast energies expended in the compilation of the mishnayot, and the eventual formation of the "Talmud(s)" by the Tannaim, Amoraim, and Savoraim of those early centuries. And though these works are invariably doctrinal and organizational, and full of commentaries of one kind of another on some set of religious precepts or another, or a refutation of others, the same rule applies. Those Apostolic Fathers who were in the company of the apostles themselves were almost certainly initiates to the Mystery, and a party to the even greater conspiracy to keep it sealed from the world at large...
The Highest gave understanding unto the Five men, and they wrote the wonderful visions of the night that were told, which they knew not: and they sat forty days, and they wrote in the day, and at night they ate bread...
In forty days they wrote two hundred and four books...
And it came to pass when the forty days were fulfilled, that the Highest spake, saying, The first that thou hast written publish openly, that the worthy and unworthy may read it.
But keep the Seventy last, that thou mayest deliver them only to such as be wise among the people:
For in them is the spring on Understanding (Binah), the fountain of Wisdom (Hokhmah), and the stream of Knowledge (Da'at)...(2 Esdras 14:42-47).
From that time on, however, there was an almost complete spiritual blackout, for it is clear that those who came shortly after them were not initiated--perhaps into the fact that there "was a mystery," but not into the Mystery itself. Eusubius reveals it plainly in his near adoration of Constantine, as do the other Church Fathers in their various non-mystical and non-kabbalistic ways--speaking harshly of things from those times on that they no longer knew, or understood. These latter--whose growing concern was organization and political order, and no longer the freedom of thought necessary to the attainment of personal insight (laboring in the vineyards of Caesar as they were by then)--had sacrificed any chance of seeing into the hidden structure of the written works they were inheriting from the first century. Nor would they allow themselves into the fellowship of those Gnostic sects (those "California cults" as Thomas Cahill described them in How the Irish Saved Civilization), who at least knew there was a hidden structure to these writings, even if they could not piece it all together themselves, and that a certain freedom of thought was the necessary key to it all. In the interest of order they (the orthodox) instead drove out of the life of the "church" every freethinking individual, merkabah mystic, priestly order, or gnostic sect that was not in accordance with their emerging, worldly dictates. This of course eventually led to all the schisms and disorders that have characterized the history of the Church in general, the relationship between the Roman and Eastern churches, and which still defines the Christian religion today. (Poor Pope John-Paul is oblivious to it all, as are all the pompous clerics of the Eastern world. Each believes that their doctrines and their historically divided-churches are still relevant to the continuing life and to the ultimate purpose of Christianity in the world).
The same is true of Judaism, but with somewhat different consequences. Except for its proclamation of the violent Bar Kochba as the messiah early in the second century (proving immediately that many of the leading rabbis of that time had no real vision of the higher world either--of the Angel of Divine Presence, the Metatron, hovering everywhere above and around them in the transcendent realm...Zechariah 9:14)...
"Mention is once made of a rather mysterious figure called Messiah son of Joseph. The passage reads: 'Messiah son of Joseph was slain, as it is written, "They shall look unto me whom they have pierced; and they shall mourn for him as one mourneth for his only son. (Zech.xii.10)," (Suk.52a)'...(One is tempted here to...well, to let such things take hold in their own perfect way).
The hope of the coming of the Messiah naturally became more fervent in the time of severe national eclipse. When the oppression of the conqueror grew intolerable, the Jews instinctively turned to the Messianic predictions contained in their Scriptures. Josephus records how, in the years immediately preceding the destruction of the Temple, men came forward claiming to be the Redeemer foretold by the prophets. A notable instance is afforded in the following century by Bar Kochba, or, as some named him, Bar Koziba, who led the revolt against Rome (see Romans 13:1-7), and was hailed by R. Akiba as Messiah. We are informed: 'R. Akiba expounded, "There shall come forth a star (Heb. 'kochab') out of Jacob" (Num.xxiv.17) in the sense, "There shall come forth Koziba from Jacob." When R. Akiba beheld Bar Koziba he exclaimed, "This is king Messiah" but R. Jochanan b. Torta remarked, "Akiba, grass will grow in your cheeks and still the son of David will not have come." (p. Taan.68d)." Everyman's Talmud, pp.348, 49.
...and except for some sporadic instances of apostasy and forced marches, Orthodox Judaism as an institution has by and large accompanied no armies, and has overswept no lands in the Name of God (not until the 20th century that is). It has sentenced none to the gallows or the flames (not until the 20th century that is), but has rather throughout the centuries been a victim of these things itself. No wonder it despises the name of Jesus. The Talmud (in which this obscure "Jeschu" is defamed in every unknowing and apocryphal way as a result), brought to its present forms from the fifth to tenth centuries, was a collective effort in self preservation--not only from those into whose hands the Law and the Prophets had "fallen" (the Essenes ostensibly among them because of their Gnostic and Buddhist tendencies), but from what Christianity was rapidly becoming after the mysteries were sealed. The Talmud is also the result of a commandment that was passed along that line on the Tree of Life that leads from Binah (the time of Moses) to Din, or Geburah (the time of Christ), to Hod (in our time), instructing those Jews who received it to "place a hedge around the Torah." (Avot 1). The question we will ask, however, is from where did this commandment come? (From above of course. For unbeknown to it, the Lord of History was setting this branch of Judaism aside, as "Keepers," Shamerim, of the jot and tittle and minutia of the Written Law, as it is written: No man also having drunk old wine straightaway desires new, for he saith the old is better...Luke 5:39)...
THE TALMUD is a massive and monumental compendium of sixty-three books: the learned debates, dialogues, conclusions, commentaries, commentaries upon commentaries, commentaries upon commentaries upon commentaries, of the scholars who for over a thousand years interpreted the Torah (the first five books of the Bible, also known as the Five Books of Moses) and applied its teachings to problems of law, ethics, ceremony, traditions.
The first division of the Talmud is the Mishna (from the Hebrew word shano, "to study, to teach" (please see 1 Timothy 1:4-8; 4:13-16; 2 Tim.2:15), a collection of interpretations of biblical laws as they were applied to social conditions in Palestine (and elsewhere) between the fifth century before, and the second century of, the Christian era. These laws, which included court decisions, opinions, regulations, ethical teachings, etc., were transmitted orally; the Mishna is therefore known as the "Oral Law," as distinct from the "Written Law" of the Torah.
The wise men were afraid that written judgments might delimit and diminish the authority of the sacred Torah. But being sensible men no less than scholars, they knew that the Oral Laws would surely be changed and misinterpreted unless some written document served as authority; so they secretly made abbreviated notations!...Little by little the task of codifying the Mishna was undertaken, and it was completed in about 200 A.D. by Judah ha-Nasi (the Prince), the head of the Sanhedrin ( a great council of rabbis-sages-and scribes; a Supreme Court so to speak)...
The second division of the Talmud is known as the Gemara (from the Aramaic, "to learn"), the vast compendium of commentaries upon the Mishna. The continuing colloquium which resulted in the Gemara took place in the great academies of Palestine and Babylonia from the second to the fifth centuries...The legal parts of the Talmud are called Halakah. The elements that are ethical, poetic, allegorical, anecdotal, are known as Haggadah.
The Talmud embraces everything from theology to contracts, cosmology to cosmetics...It is majestic--and pedantic; brilliant--and dreary; insightful-and trivial; awesome-and maddeningly obscure...Sophistry runs rife, abracadabras abound, and profundity often ends in mythology, astrology, numerology, and quaint nonsense: wrestlings with the Devil and his Demons, revelations from shining angels and celestial messengers, mystical miasmas beyond measuring. Like Catholic scholastics, the Talmudists spent a good deal of time and intellect in dialectical taffy-pulls.
The Talmud is not dogma. Judaism has few...The Talmud is not a catechism. It is a long, involved explication of a text, the Torah, and the commentaries on that text. It illustrates the ways in which the Biblical passages can be interpreted, argued over, and reinterpreted. For over the sprawling terrain of the Talmud disagreements rage, views clash, arguments are marshaled, advanced, withdrawn...Rabbinical law is very far from being unitary or consistent; opposing views--even rancorous--disagreements are set forth in the Talmud's pages. The rabbis taught that "both these (words) and these (words) are the words of the living God."
For over two centuries (up to the time of Christianity) rival schools in Jerusalem, one loyal to Hillel, the other to Shammai, wrangled and debated on religious and juridical matters, on ethics, morality, custom, observance. No fewer than 316 of these debates are preserved in the Talmud. Hillel's disciples nearly always win the argument--because the Hillelites were always forbearing and humble, presenting the argument of their opponents with exemplary deference." The Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten, pp.393-395.
OF THE RIGHTEOUS REMNANT
(Romans, chapter 11, KJV)
"Howbeit, with the rest of them--that is, with those that held fast to His commandments--God has ever made good His everlasting Covenant with Israel, revealing to them the hidden things concerning which Israel in general had gone astray--even His holy sabbaths and his glorious festivals, His righteous ordinances, the ways of His truth and the purposes of His will, 'the which if a man do, he shall live' (Lev.18:5). He opened for them a Well of water unbounding, which they might dig. But them that spurned those waters He did not permit to live. And though they kept sullying themselves with human transgression and with filthy ways, and kept saying, 'Tis our own concern,' yet did God with His mysterious power shrive their iniquity and forgive their transgressions and build for them in Israel a firmly established House the like of which has not existed from ancient times until this day...
THE REWARD OF THE FAITHFUL
"These were the 'holy men' of former times--the men whose sins God pardoned, who knew right for right and wrong for wrong. But all who up to the present time have succeeded them in carrying out explicitly the Law from which those ancients drew their lessons, them too will God forgive, in accordance with the Covenant which He made with those ancients to forgive their iniquities. And when the present era is completed, there will be no more express affiliation with the house of Judah; every man will mount guard for himself. 'THE FENCE WILL BE REBUILT, AND THE BOUNDS FAR-FLUNG.' (Micah 7:11)." The Zadokite Document, from The Dead Sea Scriptures, pp.70,71.
Thus the answer lies for the moment in the realization that the idea of placing a Fence around the Law was already present with the Essenes, before the time of Christ and long before the Rabbis began to fully implement it with Mishna and Gemareh in the second century. As we pursue the true identity of Paul we will also be exploring the means by which the commandment to build this Fence came over to the Pharisees from the Essene side of the Tree. We shall see how it was to facilitate the very structure, and the historical dimensions of the Tree of Life itself. The Talmud as such (which grew out of those times to constitute the Oral Law for Jews), is, as is told above, comprised of a complex compilation of orthodox opinions and responses to that earlier 2nd and 3rd century collection of materials, which in turn was gathered out of those more obscure corners of the preceding three centuries. The Mishna as this first collection or codification is known was gathered a text here and a text there, a recollection here and a recollection there. It is accredited to Rabbi Judah, Yahuda Hanassi, during the closing years of the second century, but the initial compilation is, again, accredited to Rabbi Akiba...but not exclusively:
"The great rabbis of the Talmudic era were generally identified by their individual names prefaced by the title "Rabbi." Only one was simply called "Rabbi"...with no need to indicate his specific name. All knew that when one referred to "Rabbi" or "Rebbe" the intention was Rabbi Yahuda Hanassi. The expression of affection was due to his personal greatness as well as his outstanding service to the community...
Probably the greatest accomplishment of Rabbi Yahuda Hanassi was his compilation of the Mishna. This too was for the benefit of 'mankind.' He saw that times had changed and it became necessary to have a central written code for all Jews. WHAT EARLIER GENERATIONS COULD RECORD IN THEIR MEMORY WAS BECOMING FORGOTTEN...Rabbi Yahuda was a leader recognized by all and was thus able to formulate a text of the Oral Law that would be acceptable to all." Rabbi Zushe Winner, the Jewish Press.
"Excelling all others in this sphere was R. Akiva, 'the father of the Mishna,' of whom it was said that he systematized Midrash (halakhah), halahkot, (mishnayot), and aggadot. (TJ. Shek 5:1, 48c). Judah Ha-Nasi said, 'To whom can R. Akiva be compared? To a worker who took his basket and went forth. He found wheat which he put in it, he found barley which he put in it, he found spelt which he put in it, lentil which he put in it. When he entered to recite a blessing, he separated the wheat by itself. (See Matthew 13:30)...In a like manner R. Akiva arranged the entire Torah.' (ARN 18, p.67: and see Rashi, Git.67a)..."And all are taught in accordance with the view of R. Akiva...By expositions of biblical verses (however) HE CONTROVERTED EARLIER 'HALAKHOT,' AND DID NOT ALWAYS PAY REGARD TO TESTIMONIES AND TRADITIONS (Nid.6:11: Tosef..ibid 6:6; Nid 52b). But on occasion he also retracted his former view.'...Encyclopedia Judaica, Mishna, pp.94-108
"'All is foreseen, and freewill is given, and the world is judged by goodness; and all is according to the amount of work.'
Another saying by Akiba, though with nothing except the sequence (in the Sayings of the Fathers) to show that he was its author. It is a declaration concerning divine foreknowledge and human free will. It attempts no solution of the contradiction between these, but affirms both and rests in the assurance that He who judges is good. Judgment takes account of what man has done. Into these few lines Akiba compressed well nigh the whole Rabbinic philosophy of religion. Perhaps philosophy of religion is hardly the right term, FOR THE RABBIS OF THE TALMUDIC PERIOD WERE NOT EXPONANTS OF PHILOSOPHY. (The earliest of Christians were). But these words of Akiba give the Rabbinic answer to one of the great problems of the philosophy of religion; and the answer has never been challenged as the expression of the fundamental Jewish conviction, that divine foreknowledge and human freedom were equally real and true, though human wisdom could not intellectually reconcile them. (It is one of the quantum paradoxes of which the universe is created. Compare to Romans 8:28-39, and to the reality of all the events of the 20th century). Akiba spoke for the practical needs of the religious and ethical consciousness of man, NOT for the theoretical satisfaction of the inquiring mind. In like manner he affirmed, what Judaism has never challenged, THAT THE CHARACTERISTIC OF THE DIVINE JUDGMENT IS GOODNESS; whether judgment be, or, according to some, be not, according to the amount of work. Akiba here laid bare the 'solid rock' on which the whole structure of Rabbinic Judaism was founded." The Ethics of the Talmud: Sayings of the Fathers, by R. Travers Herford, pp.88,89.
R. Akiva's pupils, who in principle accepted his method of arrangement and his Mishna, but were divided in their view as to both its contents and the formulation of 'halakhot,' introduced into their 'mishnayot' some collections of the teachings of other 'tannaim,' even citing their words anonymously. R. Judah did this WITH THE MISHNA OF R.ELIEZER (Zev.3:6; see Tosef., ibid. 2:17). R. Yose, who received the tradition from Johannan b. Nuri (Ket. 1:10; Tosef., Shev. 4:13; Meg. 2:4) and was the pupil of R. Halafta, disagreed with R. Akiva...Our Mishna embodies also collections whose relation to R. Akiva's Mishna is not clear but which in any event used earlier compilations..."
Like R. Joshua, ELIEZER b. HYRCANUS TAUGHT AND ARRANGED THE 'HALAKHOT' ACCORDING TO SUBJECT MATTER, AND ALTHOUGH HIS EXCOMMUNICATION LED TO A SUPPLANTING OF HIS MISHNA, REMNANTS OF IT HAVE NEVERTHELESS BEEN PRESERVED IN OUR MISHNA: 'R. Ilai said: I heard from R. Eliezer...I likewise heard from him...' (see Er. 2:6). Hallah 1:6 is identical with R. Ilai's statement quoting R. Eliezer (see Tosef. Hal.1:6). At times however R. Eliezer's statements were ascribed to, and taught in the name of, R. Joshua..." Encylopedia Judaica, Mishna, pp.94-108.
The point to be made here is that not every mishnayot passed through the hands of R. Akiva, but some, or even much of what Rabbi Judah compiled came by way of a certain R. Eliezer, who was himself excommunicated. For what? For his fellowship with the "heritics" (those Essenes who formed the early Jewish Church, and very likely with the person, or rather, with the knowledge of the hidden doctrines of Elisha ben Abuyah [Paul] himself). And as such neither Rabbi Judah, or those who grew up after that time on Talmud-Torah could have suspected that these mishnayot and traditions which came over to them via Eliezer (or in the name of Eliezer), actually originated with those Merkabah mystics--those earliest of Christian-Essenes--who were themselves still part of the Right Hand-Jewish tradition on the Tree of Life. They would not have been aware that these teachings, these very guarded mishnayot came over to them from the other side of the Tree, the side of Levi, where (the original) Jochannan ben Zakkai (John the son of Zacharia), was teaching throughout the wilderness of Judaea...
"The name Azai is a contracted form of Azariah; cp. ZACCAI FOR ZECHARIAH, JOHAI FOR JOHANNAN, Illai perhaps for Eleazar, and Nittai for Nathanjah" (see John 1:45-51). Pirke Aboth (The Ethics and Sayings of the Fathers), Text and Commentaries by R. Travers Herford.
These teachings would have also come over via John's disciple Simon bar Yonah--under the name of Schimeon bar Yochi, whose ministry, as Paul wrote, was still, and almost explicitly to the "circumcision." (Galatians 2:7-9). (The Gospels themselves, in their peculiar midrashic style, go as far to conceal these things as they do to reveal them). What we may surmise is that these names and many of the kabbalistic doctrines of the early Church passed over into Judaism, and were eventually associated with certain other personages who, after repeating the doctrines in the name of so and so, adopted the names themselves. (Pseudepigraphica was a common literary practice in those times)...
"He (Eliezer ben Hyrkanos) sat down on the arable ground and wept. His father said to him: But why dost thou weep?...He answered him: I weep because I desire to learn Torah. (His father said to him: Verily thou art Twenty-eight years old, yet dost thou desire to learn Torah? Nay, go, take thee a wife and begat sons and thou wilt take them to school). HE FASTED TWO WEEKS, NOT TASTING ANYTHING UNTIL ELIJAH--MAY HE BE REMEMBERED FOR GOOD--APPEARED UNTO HIM (Matthew 11:7-14) and said to him: Son of Hyrkanos! Why dost thou weep? He replied to him: Because I desire to learn Torah. ELIJAH SAID TO HIM: IF THOU DESIREST TO LEARN TORAH GET THEE UP TO JERUSALEM TO RABBAN JOCHANAN (JOHN) BEN ZAKKAI. Midrash Pirke De Rabbi Eliezer (The Chapters of Rabbi Eliezer the Great), Translated by Gerald Friedlander, p.2.
"Most Kabbalists ascribe the Bahir to Rabbi Nehuniah ben HaKana, a Talmudic sage of the first century, and the leading mystic of his generation. The reason seems to be that he is the sage who opens the text, as well as the fact that he was known to be the leader of a major mystical school that flourished in the Holy Land. Aside from this tradition, however, there would be little internal evidence in the text to support this attribution.
An interesting possibility is that Rabbi Amorai, who plays an important role in the Bahir, is actually a pseudonym for Rabbi Nehunia. Careful study indicates that this mysterious Rabbi Amorai, who is mentioned nine times in the text, is actually the source of the main teachings found in the Bahir...(This) is particularly intriguing, since his name is found nowhere else in classical Jewish literature. All attempts to identify him have been futile, and it is assumed by many that this is a fictitious name. More probable is the assumption that it was a pseudonym assumed by Rabbi Nehuniah. The word Amorai means 'speakers,' and would indicate that Rabbi Nehuniah was the primary spokesman for the group, the plural being used as a sign of respect. THE USE OF SUCH A PSEUDONYMN WOULD NOT BE TOO SURPRISING, SINCE WE FIND OTHER EXAMPLES OF THIS IN THE TALMUD...
AS A YOUNG MAN HE STUDIED IN THE SCHOOL OF RABBI YOCHANAN BEN ZAKKAI (which Yochanan ben Zakkai, the original or the one who afterwards assumed the name?), even though he was already an ordained rabbi..." Introduction to the Bahir.
"This introduction to the 'Thanksgiving Hymns' (in the Dead Sea Scrolls) was inscribed by one of Judah's disciples soon after Judah's death. The disciple wrote in the first person. Judah (or whoever this Essene Teacher of Righteousness was), of course, had done the same in his own hymns. The result of this pronominal peculiarity was to make the disciple's introduction seem to be the words of the teacher. This effect was intentional, but--fine as the line may seem--the ancients did not consider such writing fraud per se....The ancients made a distinction that we do not. This distinction hinged on integrity and intent. Provided that one wrote not to deceive, but in the spirit of the figure impersonated--carrying his ideas forward with integrity, making his point, as it were, in current controversies--no offense was involved. THIS (writing or teaching in the name of another) WAS A COMMON LITERARY CONVENTION OF THE PERIOD...Scholars call the phenomenon 'pseudepigrapha.' The First Messiah, p.55.
Jochannan ben Zakkai, we are told, was also a disciple of Hillel, who received and passed on the traditions that were handed down from the members of the Great Assembly. The fact was hidden, or it was since forgotten or not even known by others outside of "the Circle," that this Great Assembly never existed in Palestine at all, but above, in Europe. It was made up of the more Central-European Remnant of the great Jewish Assembly, a more-central branch of the Druid assembly Caesar spoke of in his memoirs. It was the same that was alluded to in the mishnayot handed down concerning Rabban Gamaliel the Elder:
"Rabban Gamaliel Ha-Zakan (the 'elder'), a grandson of Hillel, lived in the first half of the first century. As president of the Sanhedrin he maintained close contact not only with the Jews of Erez Israel, but also with those in the Diaspora. (In this case the Jews in Palestine are the Diaspora). The Talmud has preserved three letters with the original text containing reminders about the times of separating tithes and information about the leap year, which R. Gamaliel dictated to the scribe Johanan, while seated in the company of sages upon the steps of the Temple Mount. In these letters he addresses 'our brethren in UPPER GALILEE AND LOWER GALILEE,' 'our brethren of THE UPPER SOUTH AND THE LOWER SOUTH,' and 'our brethren of the exile of Babylon, the exile of Media, and the other exiles of Israel.' (Sanh.11b; Tosef., Sanh.2:6; TJ, Sanh.1:2, 18d). Encyclopedia Judaica.
Hyam Maccoby, in his The Mythmaker, Paul and the Invention of Christianity, says:
"If his parents were indeed 'God-fearers,' they must have told him in his youth about the famous Pharisees of Judaea, who occupied the apex of Jewish religious learning and piety, and were almost legendary figures to the Jews and God-fearers of the Diaspora. The young Saul would have heard the names of the greatest Pharisee leaders, Hillel, Shammai and Gamaliel. Perhaps even in Tarsus (Tarshish), he may have seen one or two of the noted Pharisee figures of his day, for many of the sages were travellers, who briefly visited Jewish communities in both the Roman and Parthian empires, in order to preach and deliver messages from the central authorities of Pharisaism in Jerusalem." p.98.
The fact is that no one knows anything of these sages--who they were, or the full extent of their travels--other than what has been passed down about them; or of this period in history other than what we can surmise from other sources. And neither has history wondered aloud about Paul's real identity, nor has it asked much about this place called Tarsus, or rather Tarshish, from which we are told he came. Paul himself provides the clue when he says: I am verily a man which am a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia (Acts 21:39,40), which does not mean that he is from anywhere in the East at all. Employing the same narrative methods as we have from the beginning of this work we read from The Histories of Herodotus:
"Now the Phoacaeans were the first of the Greeks who performed long voyages, and it was they who made the Greeks acquainted with the Adriatic and with Tyrrhenia, WITH IBERIA AND THE CITY OF TARTESSUS..." (Book I.163).
NOTE TO HERODOTUS..."The Iberia of Herodotus is THE SPANISH PENINSULA. Tartessus was a colony formed there very early by the Phoenicians. It was situated beyond the Straits at the mouth of the Baetis, near the mouth of the modern Cadiz. TARSUS, TARTESSUS, TARSHISH ARE VARIANTS OF THE SAME WORD." The Histories of Herodotus, Translated with notes by George Rawlinson, p.111.
"TARSUS, the capital of Cilicia, has been identified by various authors with the biblical TARSHISH. Josephus relates how Jonah embarked at Jaffa "to sail to Tarshish" in Cilicia." (Antiquities 9.208). Encyclopedia Judaica.
"'The heart of the Open Sea' is mentioned with 'the ships of Tarshish' at Ezekiel 27:25,26. (Compare Psalm 48:7; Jonah 2:3). In view of these points, Josephus's identification of Tarshish with the city of Tarsus in Cilicia (in Asia Minor) does not seem to be well founded." Aid To Bible Understanding.
"Cilicia (in Asia Minor) was named after the mythical Cilix, who settled there (thus bringing the name Cilicia with them) after searching for his sister Europa at the bidding of their father Agenor, king of Tyre or Sidon. (Places originally situated out on the Atlantic). After the Trojan War, according to another legend possessing some historical foundation, parts of the coastland were settled by Greeks (Europeans) known as Cilices (originating according to Homer, from the Troad in the Northwestern part of the peninsular) led by Mopsus the seer and later reinforced during the age of colonization." Encyclopedia of the Classical Age.
"SPAIN...Jews lived in Spain in very early times, although the legend that Solomon's treasurer Adoniram died there, as well as the story that the Jews of Toledo, in a letter addressed to the Sanhedrin at Jerusalem, declared against the crucifixion of Jesus, cannot be credited. Yet it is certain that the Apostle Paul intended to visit Spain to proclaim his new teachings to the Jews living there (Romans 15:24, 28), and that Vespasian, and especially Hadrian, who was himself a Spaniard, transported several Jewish prisoners to Spain...and the ancient coins unearthed in ancient Terragona give evidence of an early settlement of Jews in Spain..." A Jewish Encyclopedia.
But now having no more place in these parts, and having a great desire these many years to come unto you;
WHENSOEVER I TAKE MY JOURNEY INTO SPAIN, I will come unto you...(Romans 15:23,24).
Josephus, who is the primary source of our understanding of those times, is, as we shall come to see, also an initiate into these higher mysteries and is also hiding as much in his narratives of those times as he reveals. The whole period is be-clouded in the Divine Mist if you will (see Chapter 4). And further study will continue to reveal how this Cloud gradually descended out of Europe eastward--over those centuries leading up to the time of Alexander, and continued to descend during the tumultuous events of the Maccabean period--before it ascended back up into Europe again in the mystery of Christ. (Please follow this link up into the center of the Oracle before continuing on):
"According to Jewish tradition, Ezra founded the...Great Assembly, a synod of teachers who received the corpus of doctrine which had been preserved to their day, adapted and developed it to suit the new conditions of their age, and then transmitted it to the pioneers of the Talmudic Rabbis. The chain of authority is thus described: 'Moses received the Torah on Sinai, and handed it down to JOSHUA; Joshua to the Elders; the Elders to the Prophets; and the Prophets handed it down to the men of the Great Assembly.' (Aboth 1.1).
The existence of such a Synod has been questioned by modern scholars. (And this because there is no trace of its existence whatsoever in Palestine. It didn't assemble there--not before the time of Christianity). While it must be admitted that the two and a half centuries which followed the career of Ezra are wrapped in obscurity and practically no historical data are available, yet there seems no sound reason to doubt that an official body of teachers must have functioned during that period. A far-seeing reformer like Ezra could not have failed to realize that his work would inevitably fall to pieces soon after his death unless he was succeeded by men who, imbued with his own zeal, would continue his policy...
When the veil of ignorance lifts we find ourselves in the early part of the second century B.C. witnessing a heroic struggle on the part of a small band of Jews to resist an attempt to destroy their religion. The Hasmoneans pitted themselves against the armies of Syria because Antiochus dared to order them to violate the precepts of Judaism, 'to the end they might forget the Torah and change all the ordinances' (1 Macc.i.49). Mattathias, on raising the standard of revolt, proclaimed: 'Whoever is zealous for the Torah, and maintaineth the covenant, let him follow me' (ibid. ii.27); and before his death he exorted his sons: 'Be valient and shew yourselves men in the behalf of the Torah.' (ibid. 64)." Everyman's Talmud, pp.xxxvi.
We have seen in the Addendum chapter entitled "Notes From the Center of Europe" how Josephus identified these Hasmoneans with certain groups of Celts and Thracians (Jews), who had--according to all the implications of his histories and the Books of the Maccabees--extended their affairs out of Europe into lower Syria and Palestine (over the entire region from the Hellespont southward which the prophets included in the broader term, "Samaria"...Ezekiel 16:44-53)...
1 KINGS, CHAPTER 8...(KJV).
The Greek historian Polybius, who makes no mention whatsoever of any Jews in his account of those affairs, and of those times, supports it in his reference instead to "those marauding Galatian tribes, who were terrorizing the Greek cities of Anatolia" in the time of the Seleucids:
"...Then having explained the causes of this war and HOW ANTIOCHUS CROSSED OVER TO EUROPE, I shall relate first of all how he was driven out of Greece, secondly how after his defeat in this campaign he relinquished all his territories in Asia up to the Taurus mountains, and thirdly how the Romans, AFTER CRUSHING THE AGGRESSION OF THE GALLIC TRIBES (the Maccabees) IN GALATIA, established undisputed rule over the whole of Asia Minor and delivered all its inhabitants west of Taurus from the fear of barbarian invasions AND THE LAWLESS ACTION OF THE GAULS." Polybius, Penguin Classics, p.180.
"The Senate gave up all idea of pursuit. In the first place they assumed that Demetrius (the grandson of Antiochus the Great) had by then got a long start on his voyage (from Rome) since the wind was favourable...A few days later they appointed three commissioners...to investigate the state of Greece, and next to cross to Asia and observe the results of Demetrius' attempt (at becoming king). They were also to look into the attitude adopted by other Kings, and act as mediators IN THE DISPUTE BETWEEN THESE RULERS AND THE GALATIANS" (absolutely no mention of the Jews) (p.526).
And from this we also reason that these now-Asian-Celts were drawn into these events, not only as a result of the overarching ambitions of the Selucid kings, but of the wars in general that were being waged between the Selucids and the Ptolemies. We learned that these wars were not only fought overland between the present regions of Syria and Egypt (which is where history erroneously places the totality of these Maccabean wars), but across the Hellespont, and by sea, between Egypt and the mainland of Europe as well. These wars encompassed a Jewish population that was spread across the whole Eastern world at that time, from Europe to Asia Minor, to Egypt. Just because other historians did not classify these European peoples as Jews, it does not mean that certain Jewish or Hebrew scribes, who had a broader view of history, could not--which they did. We can also readily identify some of those Celts who spilled out of Europe with the Galatians, to whom Paul addressed his Epistle. And though his ministry was primarily to the Gentiles, he clearly addresses these Galatians as if they were Jews, and writes to them, not only of Jewish matters (of Hebrew allegories and archetypes), but of things that will ultimately concern the Jewish people in our time--those Zionists who also spilled out of Europe to the East again in these last days--again in the literal spirit of the Maccabees. (Galatians, chapter 5).
We have also learned that the place-names and geographical locations referred to by the authors of our Hebrew texts were not always the places we think they were referring to, for many place-names in those ancient times were carried from an original place to some other place, or had a broader meaning than we are presently aware of. The word, or the place named Cyprus for instance. Josephus says:
"Of the three sons of Javan also, the son of Japhet, Elisa gave name to the Eliseans, who were his subjects; they are now the Aeolians. Tharsus to the Tharsians: for so was Cilicia of old called; the sign of which is this, that the noblest city they have, and a metropolis also, is Tarsus, the "tau" being by change put for the "theta." Cethimus possessed the island of Cethima; it is now called Cyprus: AND FROM IT IS THAT ALL ISLANDS, AND THE GREATER PART OF THE SEA-COASTS ARE NAMED CHETHIM BY THE HEBREWS..." Antiquities of the Jews, Book I.VI.I.
(Now understand the Habukkuk Commentary in the Dead Sea Scrolls. It is referring to America in the last days). Thus the point we are striving at here is that just as these things formed the hidden backdrop against which the religious books and historical documents of those times were written, they also formed the backdrop and the conditions under which the precepts of the Mishna were secretly transmitted. Confusion, as it is said in the Book of Daniel, as at this day, to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel that are far or near...(Daniel 9:4-8; Baruch, chapter 2).
Many things transpired in history between the time of Ezra and the formulation of the Mishna over five-hundred years later. The commandment to set a hedge or a fence around the Written Torah was also received in reaction to the interdictions and the persecutions certain pious Jews and Samaritans later suffered at the hands of the Hasmoneans after they came to power in the East, who said they were champions of the Torah but were not. But almost certainly--according to the already-quoted Zadokite Document--from that same fellowship of Merkabah mystics, who not only had insight to the wondrous mysteries, and to the dimensions of the Oracle with its two distinct sides (Levi and Judah), but who also "knew the place." These Jewish mystics were also preparing to pass into occultation (to get inside that fence themselves--with Judaism itself), again, according to the dictates of the Oracle (according to the hidden ordinances of the Moon), as the very sublime but-also-concealed doctrines of Paul were left to accompany the course of the Sun of Righteousness (Christianity), in its rise to power in the Western world. (Understand Malachi, chapter 4, KJV). And just as Christianity grew up with no clear idea of the meaning or the source of the traditions that were passed to it, so it is plain to see that the same is true for Judaism. It was a great conspiracy:
"Rabbi Schimeon (Simon) sat down and wept; then he said, 'WOE! IF I SHOULD REVEAL IT! WOE IF I SHOULD REVEAL IT NOT!' His companions who were with him were silent.
Rabbi Abba arose and said unto him: 'With the favour of the Lord, also it is written, (Ps.24:14), "The Arcanum of Tetragrammaton (YHVH) is with them that fear him." And well do these companions fear the Holy and Blessed One; and now they have entered into the assembly of the tabernacle of his house, some of them have only entered, and some of them have departed also.' Moreover it is said the companions who were with Rabbi Schimeon were numbered and they were found to consist of Rabbi Eleazar, his son; and Rabbi Abba, and Rabbi Yahuda, and Rabbi Yosi the son of Jacob, and Rabbi Isaac, and Rabbi Chisqiah the son of Rav, and Rabbi Chia, and Rabbi Yosi, and Rabbi Yisa. (Ten in all).
They gave their hands unto Rabbi Schimeon, and raised their fingers on high, and entered into a field under the trees (as Druids do) and sat down...
Rabbi Schimeon began, and said, 'Time for Thee, O Tetragrammaton, to lay Thine Hand.' (see ChapterS 6). Why is it time for the Tetragrammaton to lay His hand? Because they have perverted Thy law. What is this, 'they have perverted Thy law?' THE HIGHER LAW, which is itself made void, if it is not carried out according to His commands. Wherefore is this? (Or, as others read: Wherefore is this name Tetragrammaton here employed?) This hath been said concerning the Ancient of Days. For it is written, Deut.33:29: 'Blessed art thou O Israel: who is like unto thee?' Also it is written, Exodus 15:11: Who is like unto Thee among the gods, O Tetragrammaton?'
He called Rabbi Eleazar his son, and commanded him to sit down before him, and Rabbi Abba on the other side, and said, 'We are the type of all things (that is, we represent the Three Columns of the Sephiroth); thus far are the columns established.' (Compare Galatians 2:9).
They kept silence, and they heard a voice; and their knees knocked one against the other with fear. What was this voice? The voice of the Higher Assembly, which has assembled above. (For out of Paradise came the souls of the just thither, that they might hearken, together with the Shekinah of the Divine Presence).
Rabbi Schimeon rejoiced, and said, 'O Tetragrammaton! I have heard Thy speech, and was afraid!' (Hab.3:1). He hath said: It is rightly done, seeing that fear hath followed; but for us the matter dependeth upon love. (see 1 John 4:7-21). Like as it is written, Deut 6:5: 'AND THOU SHALT DELIGHT IN TETRAGRAMMATON THY GOD,' also it is written, Malachi 1:2, 'I have loved you.'
Rabbi Schimeon said further: 'HE WHO WALKETH, GOING UP AND DOWN (from one house to another) REVEALETH THE SECRET, BUT THE FAITHFUL IN SPIRIT CONCEALETH THE WORD.' (Prov.11:13).
But concerning him who is firm in spirit it is written: 'But the faithful in spirit concealeth the word.' (This phrase) 'faithful in spirit' denoteth firmness of spirit, like it is said, Isaiah 22:23: 'AND I WILL FASTEN HIM AS A NAIL IN A SURE PLACE.' Matter dependeth upon spirit...
FOR NEITHER DOTH THE WORLD REMAIN FIRM, EXCEPT THROUGH SECRECY. AND IF IN WORLDLY AFFAIRS THERE BE SO GREAT A NEED FOR SECRESY, HOW MUCH MORE IN THE THINGS OF THE MOST SECRET OF SECRETS, AND IN THE MEDIATATION OF THE ANCIENT OF DAYS, WHICH MATTERS ARE NOT EVEN REVEALED TO THE HIGHEST OF ANGELS
Rabbi Schimeon said, moreover: 'I will not say unto the heavens, that they may hear; I will not declare it unto the earth, that it may hear; for certainly we are (the symbols) of the pillars of the Universe.'
It is said in the Arcanum of Arcana, that when Rabbi Schimeon opened his mouth, the whole place was shaken, and his companions were also shaken. (See Hebrews 12:25-29). The Kabbalah Unveiled, The Greater Holy Assembly, by S.L. MacGregor Mathers, pp.109-111.
By the time the Mishna is sealed and the Talmud is composed, and the secret oral and written traditions are passed from one generation to the next, this Rabbi Schimeon, who appears everywhere in the pages of the Zohar, will become a certain Rabbi Schimeon who was said to be a later disciple of Rabbi Akiba. The doctrines and the sayings attributed to that rabbi, however, could only have come from, or through someone who was closely allied to those whose energies were also going into the formulation of the Christian mysteries. And as such we must conclude that these excerpts from the Zohar are, again, gleened from the traditions that passed into Judaism by way of the likes of Rabbi Eliezer and others, who perhaps received the teachings from Simon Peter directly. We conclude that this Rabbi Schimeon of Talmudic fame passed the doctrines along in the name of a prior Rabbi Simeon, who unbeknown to all was none other than that Rabbi Simon (bar Jonah) of Christian fame, whose ministry was, again, almost explicitly to "the Circumcision."
Let us say something of Rabbi Akiba here. And let us say it with the utmost respect for the history of Judaism (it has come to the very conclusion in the world as G-d has decreed), and for the experiences of the Jewish people throughout the centuries, and most particularly here in the 20th century. (These things too have been ordained by the Master of the Universe, despite the intellectual and academic rantings of others to the contrary). It has been said that R. Akiba was a master of the Kabbalah. He was also a strident Jewish nationalist. Thus either one knows the mystery or they do not. Rabbi Akiba did not. (Please see Romans 10). The stories related to him in the Talmud, and of all of the Tannaim of that period, reflect and are colored by the entire range of disagreements and antagonisms that characterized the period, from the time of Christ right up to the final split between Christianity and Judaism. They will even reflect the early strife that existed between Peter (Simeon) and Paul (Elisha ben Abuyah), which was settled in the secret councils of the early Church, and of which Peter will later say:
Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye might be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.
And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you;
As also in his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do all other scriptures to their own destruction...(2 Peter 3:14-16).
Why were these things also settled in secret? Because the secret was too great, and because Paul himself could not openly reveal what he understood of it either. That is, as we shall see, he could not reveal his own understanding of his position in the greater spiritual scheme of things, his understanding of his own place on the Tree of Life. To do so would be to reveal the heights and depths of the Mystery of Christ itself--which was being intentionally concealed. He had to speak cryptically to those without, which opened him up to the severest attacks by others; and only with the fullest measure of revelation to those within his own inner circle--a circle which will later include the Apostles themselves and the later authors of the Gospels. (Please understand 2 Kings 2:15). These things filtered into the thinking of the Pharisees according to the measure in which they were either willing, or made to receive them. Paul speaks of this initial strife between himself and the others, and then of the eventual arrangement between himself and Simon Peter when he says:
But of these who seemed somewhat (whatsoever they were, it maketh no matter to me: God accepteth no man's person) for they who seemed to be somewhat in conference added nothing to me.
But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed to me, as the gospel of the circumcision was to Peter;
(For He that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles):
And when James, Ce'phas, and John, WHO SEEMED TO BE PILLARS, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to Barnabus and me the Right Hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen and they unto the circumcision... (Galatians 2:6-9).
Those on the side of the Circumcision wanted to keep their concept of the Christ Mystery tight, in a more or less strict context of the written Law, for fear that the written Law itself would become over the course of time obscured in its own broader meanings. And when those meanings were spread out so thin upon the earth, as they are today, that they lost their effects on the life of Israel (especially in the great Falling Away which brought us to the founding of the American nation and to all of the events of the 20th century), there would be nothing to return to. There would be no contrast, nothing to re-excite in us the necessary tensions that exist between the Written and the Oral traditions, thus between the hidden, inner, or higher world of principles and ideas and the outer world of material forms and literal interpretations. We would forget that the emerging corpus of New Testament writings would still require interpretation in terms of the original Written Law, that the one required the other. Thus the Judaic side of the early Church took its teachings with it into the religious underground, and to preserve them against the last days committed them to the Rabbis...who in turn must have been led to understand that they were receiving a Tradition that was being absolutely concealed from the Gentiles (which it was, as fully agreed upon by Paul and the Apostles), even from those who were soon to form the outer structure of the Christian religion as we know it today.
On the other hand it was necessary that Paul's school assimilate the ideas and philosophies of the Gentile world--the Gnostic traditions and the mystery religions--for the very reason that they derived from the ancient Hebrew tradition to begin with. And for the added reason, that many of these so-called Gentiles were actually remnants of the seed of the children of Israel, some who had fallen away over the course of earlier centuries, and some who were very devout in their own understanding. It was the correct course, even though it became a great source of spiritual energy for the sons of Darkness to feed upon. But out of great Darkness proceeds great Light, the greater the one the greater the other. Millions in the Western world are now waiting for the next revelation, and the signs of Messiah. Judaism by itself, it is plain to see, could not have accomplished it. (It was inside the hedge).
What was it that Paul brought to the fellowship in Jerusalem? And what was it that initially set him apart from them as a result--the Bone of Contention as it was? In answering let us ask, what was the essential difference between John's Gospel and Paul's (Acts 18:23-28; 19:1-5)? And then let us realize, first, that the Book of Acts and the Gospel narratives did not appear until over forty years or more after Paul's epistles were disemminated throughout the early Church, and after his doctrines were finally understood and agreed upon by the Fellowship; and then secondly, that the Gospels themselves (which we shall come to see include the figure of Paul himself), are not an account of things that actually happened before the arrival of Paul on the scene, but are largely the literary result of Paul's Gospel itself (see Romans 2:16). They will reflect, not only what Paul learned from the Nazarites, or the Jewish Essenes) (the higher implications of the Name, YHShVH), but what they also learned from him (the corresponding implications of the name, Jesus. Please see chapter 6 and 7). To all of the texts and commentaries on the Qumran scrolls now in print (The Dead Sea Scriptures by Theodore Gaster, and The Dead Sea Scrolls Uncovered by Eisenman and Wise are excellent works on the subject), and to all of the Kabbalistic traditions that passed into mainstream Judaism, thus to all of the epic and apocalyptic visions of the Essene community, which were by and large the extent of the doctrines of the early Jewish church, add the Vedic and Druid mystery of Christ Crucified:
But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel that was preached of me is not after man.
For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ, (the Hesus of the West, and the Krishna, or Vishnu, of the East)...(Galatians 1:11,12).
For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
And that he was buried, and that he rose again the Third day according to the scriptures...(1 Corinthians 15:3; Hosea 6:1-3).
For I RECEIVED of the Lord that which I also delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:
And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my Body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
And after the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the New Testament in my Blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come...(1 Corinthians 11:23-29).
Paul did not learn these things from Peter or the other disciples of John the Baptist, but rather taught these things to them. The disciples of John knew the place (the City of DaViD in the Center of Europe). They had already returned to it before the execution of Stephen. They perceived the Divine Form--the overshadowing presence of the Metatron, the Lord of hosts who dwells in the sum of every natural and human event; thus the allegorical and epic relationship between the archetypal figure of Joshua, the captain of the armies of Israel (Joshua 5:13-15), and the God of Battle and War--the Great One of the Sun and the Consuming Fire. (Isaiah 66:15-18). And though they were already wearing the white robes of the Essene order, they seemed by all accounts not to have completely understood, or rather, to have concerned themselves as yet with certain doctrines of the Vedas, or of the Druids who dwelt on the other side of the mountains from Eastern and Central Europe, and how these doctrines related to the Torah. Or at least they placed no great emphasis on them. (The fact that these doctrines of the Crucified Christ were being emphasized after the advent of Paul is, of course, reflected later in the Gospel narratives, all of which were composed entirely after the facts, and after the meeting of the minds).
Thus, until Paul, the Essenes were failing to take into account that the terrible Indra (the YHVH of the Hebrews, into whose Name John was baptising those who came to him, John 1:1-14), had revealed himself to the ancient adepts in the form of the Suffering (wholly pacifistic and wholly non-violent) Sacrifice, the Lamb of God suspended on the limbs of the Cosmic World Tree. Not simply the Suffering Servant of the Hebrew Prophets, however, which was also a metaphor for the entire holy nation, but the cursed Hesus of the Druid Oak, upon whom heaven had not only laid the sins of the world but who also, as Paul discovered, guarded the Doorway to the world beyond. In this Hesus or Jesus (another distinct manifestation of the YHShVH of the Law and the Prophets, the Divine aspect in every soul), and in the corresponding dimensions of the Universal Cross, Paul discovered the unifying and central figure in the entire world-mystery system, the very apotheosis of the universe itself. Indeed, he found in this aspect of the Christ-mystery every hidden meaning of the Law and the Prophets, and thus the very source of all his troubles with the Jews--the means by which the religion of Israel is reconciled to every other religion on earth. (But this was not the whole crux of Paul's difficulties. He found even more than this as we shall shortly come to see):
And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech, or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.
For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ (Hesus-Crishna), and him crucified...(1 Corinthians 2:1,2).
Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him.
And some said, What will this babbler say? other some, He seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached to them Jesus, and the resurrection...(Acts 17:17,18).
But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;
But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the Power of God, and the wisdom of God...(1 Corinthians 1:23,24).
Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. FOR EVEN CHRIST OUR PASSOVER IS SACRIFICED FOR US.
Therefore let us keep the (epic) feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth...(1 Corinthians 5:7,8).
It was written of Simon Magus, the general archetypal figure of all ecclesiastical heresy (with whom Paul has also been compared), that he was influenced by the teachings of John the Baptist. He was part of John's outer circle. Yet we learn from the writings of Clement that he came to consider himself "the Standing One," "that power of God which is known as the Great Power," of his generation. How is it that he didn't know any better, especially since it was later written in the Gospels that Jesus himself came to be baptized by John in the Jordan? The only way to explain it lies in the fact that neither was this Simon initiated into the inner mystery, even though he thought he was. And not only that, but in his own delusions he came to think that he was possibly the focus of it all. Yet he must have been initiated just enough to know that where it said that Jesus came to be baptized of John it secretly meant in the collective Body of every soul who came to him during his secret rites of purification. This left Simon Magus with ample space to consider himself the actual Anointed One of his times, the one who was to follow the Baptist and stand along side of him on the Right side of the Tree of Life. He became the one instead with whom Simon Peter had to contend from one end of the empire to the other.
"But even if the Torah be correctly expounded by a prophet and teacher, men, it is held, can and will receive it only if they be correctly attuned. And that attunement comes...through inner enlightenment. The community considers itself, therefore, not only the remnant of Israel, but also the specially 'enlightened.'
Over and over again in the Book of Hymns thanks are rendered to God for 'illuminating the face' of His servant or for shining His light in His servant's heart...It is this state that the members of the Qumran community claim for themselves. This is the ultimate goal of the entire spiritual adventure; the aim of the Torah and of the disciplined life which it enjoins. They hold that by virtue of their 'enlightenment' they are members not only of a consecrated earthly brotherhood but...also of the Eternal Communion. As one of their psalmists puts it, they walk forever 'in UPLANDS unbounded...'" The Dead Sea Scriptures, by Theodor H. Gaster, p.7.
Thus (the mystery of YHWShWH), the Jehoshua of John the Baptist, was appearing in the persons of those who were being initiated into the overspreading mystery itself (Exodus 23:20-23; 24:9-18). The Gospel accounts, however (which were not formalized until many years later, after the teachings of Paul concerning the Druid Hesus, and after the mysteries of the Greeks and Egyptians, were wholly assimilated into the doctrines of the early Church), reflected the composite elements of this new world view--which were still based squarely and foremost in the oral tradition of Moses and the Prophets. There was no break in tradition according to Paul and the other members of the Fellowship of the Mystery.
Simon Peter, of course, was such an initiate. And even if he seems not to have fully understood, or not to have consented to the doctrines of Paul at the beginning (for reasons we shall soon discover), he is fully in line with them at the end. In the meantime he and Jochanan (John) will become major figures in the traditions of the Kabbalah. (Their secret teachings, their Merkabah visions and their names, will pass over into traditions of the Rabbis, as we have already surmised, via R. Eliezer and others). John appears on the Left hand side of the Tree of Life, the side appointed to the priesthood--to Levi. It is said in the Gospels that he is the son of the priest Zacharias (Luke 1:67-80). But this too is a wholly apocryphal account. We do not want to fail to see how the Scriptures were constructed. This Zacharias is connected by name to the end-days prophecies of Zechariah, the son of Berechia (Zech.1:1), which in turn involve the end-days prophecies of Isaiah (Isa.8:2) from which John preached. There is a string of connections here, one leading to the other. Thus John (the spirit of Elijah in his time...see Malachi, chapter 4 and Matthew 11:7-15), looking toward the last days, and with the prophetic world-view of the Essene Teacher of Righteousness, will say: Now is the axe laid to the root of the trees: Every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. (Luke 3:9). (And please recall here that Luke, the author of this narrative, is a disciple of Paul, as was Mark, and fittingly, as was John when he and Paul resided together at Ephesus--Eph(raim)-(H)esus.
"It is in apocalyptic literature that we find the first appearance of ideas of a specifically mystical character, reserved for the elect. Scholars do not agree on whether the origins of this literature are to be found among the Pharisees and their disciples or among the Essenes, and it is quite possible that apocalyptic tendencies appeared in both. It is known from Josephus that the Essenes possessed a literature which was both magical and angelogical in content. His silence concerning their apocalyptic ideas can be understood as his desire to conceal this aspect of contemporary Judaism from his (uninitiated readers). The discovery of the literary remains of the Qumran sect show that such ideas found a haven among them. They possessed the original Book of Enoch, both in Hebrew and Aramaic…In fact, traditions resembling those embedded in THE BOOK OF ENOCH found their way into rabbinic Judaism at the time of the Tannaim and Amoraim, and it is impossible to determine precisely the breeding ground of this type of tradition until the problems presented by the discovery of the Qumran writings have been solved.
The Book of Enoch was followed by apocalyptic writing up to the time of the Tannaim, and in different ways, even later. Esoteric knowledge of these books touched not only upon the revelation of the end of time and its awesome terrors, but also upon the structure of the hidden world and its inhabitants: heaven, the Garden of Eden, and Gehinnom, angels and evil spirits, and the fate of the souls in this hidden world. ABOVE THIS ARE REVELATIONS CONCERNING THE THRONE OF GLORY AND ITS OCCUPANT (Ezekiel 1:5), WHICH SHOULD APPARENTLY BE IDENTIFIED WITH THE 'WONDERFUL SECRETS' OF GOD MENTIONED BY THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS.
Here a link can be established between this literature and the much later traditions concerning (THE MYSTERIES OF CREATION, AND THE MYSTERIES OF THE DIVINE CHARIOT OF GOD). It is not just the content of these ideas which is considered esoteric; THEIR AUTHORS TOO HID THEIR OWN INDIVIDUALITY AND THEIR NAMES, concealing themselves behind biblical characters like Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Baruch, Daniel, Ezra, and others. (And may we point out that they also hid their own identities behind one main archetypal personality named Jehoshua, or Jesus). THIS SELF-CONCEALMENT, which was completely successful, has made it extremely difficult to determine the historical and social milieu of the authors. This pseudepigraphical pattern continued within the mystical tradition in the centuries that followed. The clear tendency toward asceticism as a way of preparing for the reception of the mystical tradition, which is already attested to in the last chapter of the Book of Enoch, becomes a fundamental principle for the apocalyptics, the Essenes, and the circle of Merkabah (Divine Chariot) mystics who succeeded them." Kabbalah, by Gershom Scholem, p.10.
The other side of the Oracle, the Right side of the Tree, belongs to the tribe of Judah, to the office of king Messiah, as it is written: And he hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father. (Revelation 1:6). But if the appointed Messiahs of Judah were not to come until the last days, in the West, in the time of the Eighth sefira (Romans 10:1-4), who would assume this place at the Fifth sefira named Power in that time? As we have already seen, Simon Magus was trying to fill the spot. But was not Simon Peter from the tribe of Simeon? (For all Kabbalistic purposes he was). Did not Simeon go up with Judah into his lot in ancient time, as a kind of alter-ego? (Judges 1:1-3). Was it not written: Simeon and Levi are brethren...I will divide them in Jacob, and scatter (separate) them in Israel. (Genesis 49:5-7). Why wouldn't Simon Peter feel compelled to stand on the side of the Circumcision and protect the doctrines of the true Messiah until the true Messiah(s) appeared themselves on the Right Hand side of the Tree in the fulness of time? Especially, as we said, since this Simon Magus was going throughout the empire laying claim to it himself? Peter, we must assume, would dutifully relinquish his claim to the place when the times required it, when He whose right it is, finally appeared.
"Rabbi Schimeon spake unto his companions, and said, 'HOW LONG SHALL WE ABIDE IN THE CONDITION OF ONE COLUMN BY ITSELF'? When it is written, Psalm 119:126: "It is time for Thee, Lord, to lay Thine Hand, for they have destroyed Thy law."'
'The days are few, and the creditor is urgent; the Herald crieth aloud daily, and the reapers of the land are few; and those who are about the end of the vineyard attend not, AND HAVE NOT KNOWN WHERE MAY BE THE LAWFUL PLACE.'" The Kabbalah Unveiled, by S.L. MacGregor Mathers p.109.
For one brief period in time Simon Peter's (the original Schimeon bar Yochai) name stood alongside of John's on the Oracle of Life, until the appearance in their company of the Apostle Paul. Connect and understand Paul's words at Ephesians 1:17-23 and Ephesians 2:6 in light of these matters.
ENTER, PAUL, (ELISHA ben ABUYAH)
Thus to the fray and confusion of those times, we add the person whom the Scriptures will call Paul, "the little one," as it is also written: A little one shall become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation. I the Lord will hasten it in his time. (Isaiah 60:22). It is also written: For who hath despised the day of small things? (Zechariah 4:10). As we place this soul at his appointed place on the Right Hand side of the Mystery of Christ, literally in the place of Simeon (Peter), at the Fifth sefira named Power, or Judgment, we begin to compare his own cryptic words with the words of the prophets. Read the text from Isaiah on the right, and then Paul in his own words on the left:
As we do so, we will not only be able to see into the structure of this sublime mystery (and into a partial answer to the question: "Who was Jesus?"), but we will be able to see right into the dilemma that Paul faced in his own time. For how could this one solitary man (albeit a "Jew of Jews," and a "pharisee of pharisees"), appear among the learned of his time, and in an atmosphere of so much delusion and pretense, and put "himself" forward as the really true chosen one, the avitar of his time?
He couldn't of course, as he himself wrote: He who speaks of himself seeks his own glory. All he could do was go forth in the power of Christ speaking of every other dimension and corner of the Mystery than his own. (Please understand Matthew 11:1-6, 25-27). He had to leave it to others to discover through their own inquiries and inspirations who he was. Not that it really mattered to him then, as he wrote: I seek to know nothing among you but Christ, and him crucified. There were, of course, those who were close enough for him to divulge it. What was divulged helped give rise to many of the doctrines of the subsequent schools of Christian Gnostics, in fact to the whole Arian controversy three centuries later...
"If, however, we read Paul's account of his revelation at Damascus without any presuppositions in our minds derived from the much later accounts in Acts, we begin to appreciate what enormous claims Paul was making. We have already seen one instance where the New English Bible translation plays down Paul's claims, but in another phrase, this translation plays them down even more. For where the New English Bible has 'God...chose to reveal his Son to me and through me' (Galatians 1:16), what the Greek actually says is '...TO REVEAL HIS SON IN ME.' PAUL IS SAYING, QUITE STRAIGHTFORWARDLY, THAT HE IS HIMSELF THE INCARNATION OF THE SON OF GOD. He is thus claiming to have a higher status in his new religion than was claimed for Moses in Judaism. It may be replied that Paul is here only claiming for himself what, in his view, is possible for every Christian: an identification and merging with the personality of Jesus as divine saviour; Christ, it may be said, is, 'in' every Christian, just as every Christian is 'in' Christ. Even so, Paul is claiming to be the first person in whom this miraculous merging has taken place. His 'revelation' is thus more even than a revelation: it is a transformation and a deification of Paul himself as the supreme manifestation of the phenomenon of impregnation by God. Other Christians were able to partake of this state, having been shown the way by Paul, just as other Buddhists may find Nirvana, having been shown the way by the Buddha; but Paul, like the Buddha, remains pre-eminent and quasi-divine.
Further confirmation of Paul's sense of his own uniqueness can be found in his letters. Thus, he claims that he has supreme mystical experience, quite apart from his Damascus revelation: that he was caught up to THE 'THIRD HEAVEN,' and that he was 'caught up INTO PARADISE and heard words so secret that human lips may not repeat them.' (2 Corinthians 12:2,3). Even more important for an understanding of Paul's view of his own status is his claim to have special marks or stigmata on his body, showing the depth of his self identification with the sufferings of Jesus on the cross. (See Galatians 6:17)....Thus the stigmata of Paul, whether self-inflicted or psychosomatically produced, made him, in his own eyes and those of his followers, the supreme embodiment of the power of the mystery god, the Lord Jesus Christ." The Mythmaker, Paul and the Invention of Christianity, by Hyam Maccoby, pp.106,107.
Macobby is among those in our time who do indeed view Paul as a self-possessed and even self-hating Jewish charlatan, like Simon Magus, who found and employed any means possible to rise to the top of his religious class and to make a name for himself--indeed by any means possible to exact a kind of supressed vengeance on the Jewish leaders of his time because of their rejection of him. But Paul was compelled by other realities, as we are seeing: For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel. (1 Corinthians 9:16). He was also compelled by the words: And to his son will I give one tribe (Benjamin), that David my servant may have a light always before me in Jerusalem. The city which I have chosen to put My Name there. (1 Kings 11:31-36; 12:21). Was not Benjamin himself born on the way to Ephrath, which is Bethlehem? Was he not also named "Son of the Right Hand?" (Genesis 35:16-20). Is not Paul also linked to the mysteries of Hermes-Mercurius-the Thrice Majestic on the Tree of Life? (Acts 4:12). Is not the mother of Mercury named Maia...(Mary)? As Saul preceded David to the throne of Israel, so Paul (Saul) precedes D.V.D. on the limbs of the sacred Oracle. And again, as Elisha followed Elijah in the Book of Kings, so Paul (Elisha ben Abuyah) followed John the Baptist in the affairs of those times. (2 Kings 2:11-15; Matthew 11:14):
But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heavens were shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land...
And many lepers were in Israel in the days of Eliseus (Elisha) the prophet, and none of them were cleansed, saving Namaan the Syrian.
And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things were full of wrath...(Luke 4:25-28).
Now when John had heard in prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples,
And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?...(Matthew 11:22-6; Acts 19:11-13).
And he charged them that they should not make him known:
That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias (Isaiah) the prophet, saying,
Behold my servant, whom I have chosen, my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my Spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles.... (Matthew 12:14-21; Isaiah 42:1-4):
"Then we have the Talmud, with its numerous anecdotes about 'Acher' as the rabbis called Paul...These sources are of inestimable value to the historian. These sources help us form an opinion of the man.
Paul is not a proper name. It signifies 'the little one.' The author of Acts states that his name was Saul--but it appears that he (Paul) knew no more about it than we do--and changed the P of Paul into an S, to make the Hebrew name Saul. So the author of the 'we' portion of Acts always call him Paul. Passing under an assumed name the rabbis called him Acher, 'another,' i.e., one who passes under another or assumed name.
They maintain that his name was Elisha ben Abuyah. But this name must be fictitious, because it is a direct and express reference to Paul's theology. It signifies the 'saving deity, son of the Father God.' And Paul was the author of the 'Son of God' doctrine. The fact is, he is known to the world under his assumed name only." The Rise of Christianity, by Isaac M. Wise, p.72.
Thus Paul himself says: As deceivers and yet true, as unknown and yet well known. (2 Corinthians 6:8,9). And in light of it all the question must be revisited: Just who was it that went up into Paradise and returned in peace?
"Elisha ben Abuyah...entered the Pards (PaRaDiSe) and became a heretic, known as Aher, 'that other one.'
Distinct from the exposition of the Merkabah (the Divine Chariot) which the rabbis gave on the earth below was the ecstatic contemplation of the Merkabah experienced as an ascent to the heavens, namely...to the Merkabah, through entering Pards (Paradise). This was not a matter for exposition and interpretation but of vision and personal experience. This transition, which once again connects the revelations of the Merkabah with the apocalyptic traditions, is mentioned in the Talmud alongside of the exegetical traditions (Hag.14b). It concerns the four sages who 'entered pards.' Their fate demonstrates that here we are dealing with spiritual experiences which were achieved by contemplation and ecstacy...
Simon ben Azzai 'looked and died;' Ben Zoma 'looked and was smitten' (mentally); Elisha ben Abuyah, called Aher ('other'), forsook rabbinic Judaism and 'cut the shoots,' apparently becoming a dualistic Gnostic. R. Akiva alone 'entered in peace and left in peace.' or in another reading, 'ascended in peace and descended in peace.'" Kabbalah, by Gershom Scholem, pp.13,14.
How is it that Akiba alone "ascended in peace and descended (again) in peace?" Was it really he or Elisha ben Abuyah? Yes, it was Akiba. How is it?
"Both Mishna and Talmud (Hag 2:1 and the corresponding Gemara in both the Babylonian and Jerusalem Talmud) show that, in the first century of the common era, esoteric traditions existed within these areas, and severe limitations were placed on public discussion of such subjects: 'The story of Creation should not be expounded before two persons, nor the chapter on the Chariot before one person, unless he is a sage and already has an independent understanding on the matter.'...Such an attitude is expressed in the continuation of the Mishna quoted above: 'Whoever ponders on four things, it were better for him if he had not come into the world: what is above, what is below, what was before time, and what will be hereafter.'" Scholem, p.12.
Thus according to the dictates of the Rabbis themselves, Akiba went up into the PRDS. He didn't look. He didn't see anything. He didn't ask any questions. And he came down in peace. Paul on the other hand, went up. He looked. He inquired. He saw (everything). And came down troubled and persecuted on every side. (See Isaiah 6:5). He did not only personally encounter the Metatron, the Angel of Divine Presence (in both his Universal Four-handed, and then Two-handed forms, as did John the Baptist--Arjuna), but he learned of his own place on the Tree of Life. Looking into the oracles, realizing that the spirit of Moses (the true interpreter of the Torah) had descended to take up residence in his own soul, and then seeing his own spirit descending on the Tree of Life into that of the messiah(s) in the last day, he says:
It is not expedient for me doubtless to glory, I WILL COME TO VISIONS AND REVELATIONS OF THE LORD...(1 Corinthians, chapter 12)...
Paul is transported here and is speaking as one of the anointed ones in the last day (see Zechariah, chapter 4), as it is also written: The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king, which made a marriage for his son. (Matthew 22:2-14). Then alluding to the entire structure of the Mystery of Christ, and either speaking of himself, or of John the Baptist (see Matthew 11:1-11), or both as it is also written: "The face of one sefiroth turns toward another, developing all the paths of influence," he says:
I knew a man in Christ above (Ten and Four) years ago, (whether in the Body I cannot tell; or whether out of the Body I cannot tell; God knoweth); such a one CAUGHT UP TO THE THIRD HEAVEN...
Paul is alluding here to the Essene Book of Enoch, in which is found a description of Enoch's ascent to the Third Heaven:
Enoch's (Paul's) Ascent to the Third Heaven
AND IN THE MIDST OF THE TREES THAT OF LIFE, in that place where the Lord rests, when He goes up INTO PARADISE ; and this Tree is of INEFFABLE goodness and fragrance, and adorned more than any existing thing; and on all sides it is in form gold-like (as the Menorah itself) and vermillion and fire-like, and covers all, and it has produce from fruits. (See Matthew 3:10).
ITS ROOTS ARE IN THE GARDEN AT THE EARTH'S END. And Paradise is between corruptibility and incorruptibility. (1 Corinthians 15:54-58).
And two springs come out (Revelation 22:1,2) which send forth honey and milk, and their two springs send forth oil and wine, and they separate (again) into Four parts, and go round with quiet course, and go down into the Paradise of Eden between corruptibility and incorruptibility...(Secrets of Enoch 8:3-6).
Paul has clearly discovered his own place on the Cosmic Tree. Then speaking in the spirit of his former self, or of all the dimensions of the Sefiroth together, he says:
And I know such a man, (whether in the Body, or out of the Body, I cannot tell: God knoweth);
How that he was CAUGHT UP INTO PARADISE, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
Of such a one will I glory; yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities.
For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool; for I will say the truth: but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me.
And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of revelations, there was given unto me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan, to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure...(2 Corinthians 12:3-7).
The thorn in Paul's flesh is no doubt partly the effects of his own lower nature pulling down on his higher self. It reflects his struggles with sexuality, with the meaning of love, and celibacy, determined as he had become to keep himself pure for his own soul-mate to which he would be united at the end of the age. 1 Corinthians 7:,6-8). (Maccoby has many evil assessments to make of Paul's motives here as well). But Paul (that old bald-headed Elisha), was in every way the spiritual warrior (and, as we shall come to see, a true and faithful lover). This thorn no doubt also represented those pressures on his own mind that were tempting him to doubt the substance of his own revelations, and to abandon what others were accusing him of, his heresy and delusions. Thus this thorn was also the people themselves, and the care that Paul had to exercise on their behalf despite their own inabilities to enter into his field of vision, or to rise above the level of their own earthly concerns. Elisha ben Abuyah entered the Pards, said the rabbis, and became a heretic. They said he gave himself over to dualism, a belief in more than One God. We are seeing, however, how this Elisha (Paul, for the lack of another name as yet), was an adept in the very highest of spiritual sciences, and that he understood--from the most profound kabbalistic point of view--the nature and the true meaning of the Unity of All Things...
"R. Simeon opened his discourse with the text: 'And I put my words in thy mouth.' (Is.51:16). He said, 'How greatly is it incumbent on a man to study the Torah day and night! (see Acts 20:31). For the Holy One, blessed be He, is attentive to the voice of those who occupy themselves with the Torah, AND THROUGH EACH FRESH DISCOVERY MADE BY THEM IN THE TORAH IS A NEW HEAVEN CREATED. Our teachers have told us that at the moment when a man expounds something new in the Torah, his utterance ascends before the Holy One, blessed be He, and He takes it up and kisses it and crowns it with Seventy crowns of graven and inscribed letters. When a new idea is formulated in the field of esoteric wisdom, it ascends and rests on the head of the 'Zaddik, the Life of the Universe.'...And inasmuch as all the words of the Ancient of Days are words of wisdom comprising sublime and hidden mysteries, that hidden word of wisdom that was discovered here when it ascends is joined with the words of the Ancient of Days, and becomes an integral part of them (see 2 Timothy 4:8, 18).
As for other new expositions of the Torah, they present themselves before the Holy One, blessed be He, and ascend and become 'earths of the living,' then they descend and become absorbed into one earth, whereby a new earth emerges through that new discovery in the Torah. This is implied in the verse: 'For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I am making, rise up before me...' (Isaiah 66:22). (See Revelation 21:1). It is not written, 'I have made,' but 'I am making,' signifying continual creation out of new ideas discovered in the Torah. Further it is written: 'AND I HAVE PLACED MY WORDS IN THY MOUTH, AND WITH A SHADOW OF MY HAND HAVE I COVERED THEE, TO PLANT A HEAVEN, AND TO LAY THE FOUNDATION OF THE EARTH.' (Isaiah 511:16). It does not say 'the heaven,' but 'a heaven,' Said R. Eleazer: WHAT SIGNIIFIETH, "WITH THE SHADOW OF MY HAND HAVE I COVERED THEE"' He replied 'When the Torah was delivered to Moses, there appeared myriads of heavenly angels ready to consume him with fiery breath, but the Holy One, blessed be He, sheltered him. Similarly now when the new word ascends and is crowned and presents itself before the Holy One, blessed be He, He covers and protects the word, and also shelters the author of that word, so that the angels should not become aware of him and so be filled with jealousy, until that word is transformed into a new heaven and a new earth. This is the meaning of the passage, 'And with the shadow of my hand have I covered thee, to plant a heaven and to lay the foundation of the earth.'" Prologue to the Zohar, Volume I, Translated by Sperling and Simon.
Of those Zionists who have gone backwards in our times--away from the Light that is descending again, but this time at the Western ends of the earth--of those who have truly "cut the shoots," Elisha says: Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they may be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal for God, but not according to Knowledge (Daat). For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own ("If we are not for ourselves, who will be for us? If we do not save ourselves, who will save us?"), have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God, FOR MESSIAH IS THE END OF THE LAW for righteousness to everyone that believeth. (Romans 10:1-4). Paul was indeed caught up into Paradise, but could hardly tell a soul:
PARADISE...PARDS...P.R.D.S....Psht, Rmz, Drsh, Sud.
PSHT...is the plain or simple literal rendering of superficial knowledge which anyone may read. (See 1 Peter 2:2; Isa.28:9; 1 Corinth.3:1-3; Heb.5:10-14).
RMZ...literally a "hint," and is intended for students who are developing their spiritual intellect, and do not wish to be taught by those who see only literal meanings.
DRSH...is the inferential method of reading in which the Eye of Intuition is opened (see Matthew 6:22). Then the soul transcends far above the lower mind, and far above the intellectual reasoning of others. Finally there is a fourth:
SUD, or SOD...literally, "secret." This method is taught by initiates to their own beloved disciples only. They are careful to whom they divulge these things, knowing that those who hunt for what God has hidden have "trouble for their pay." The Traditions of Kabbalah.
H. R. Johnson, in his Who Then is Paul? (p.29), says: "The interpreters extracted from the scriptures the utmost meaning possible. They supposed the writings to contain a simple or literal meaning, a suggested meaning, an investigative, and a mystic meaning...That Saul was trained in this manner is evident from his writings."
"In the Baylonian Talmud Metatron is mentioned in three places only...The first two references are important because of their connection with the polemics conducted against heretics. In 'Hagigah' it is said that the tanna Elisha ben Abuyah saw Metatron seated (on His Throne) and said, 'Perhaps there are two powers,' as though indicating Metatron as a second deity...It was proved to Elisha that Metatron could not be a second deity by the fact that Metatron received 60 strokes with fiery rods' to demonstrate that Metatron was not a god, but an angel, and could be punished. This image refers frequently in different contexts in Gnostic literature and is associated with various figures of the heavenly realm. It is however thought that the appearance of the Metatron to Elisha ben Abuyah led him to a belief in dualism.
The story in 'Sanhedrin' (however) also confers on Metatron a supernatural status. He is the Angel of the Lord mentioned in Exodus 23:21 of whom it is said, '...and hearken unto his voice; be not rebellious against him...for My Name is in him.' (Please see chapter 7). When one of the heretics. asked R. Idi why it is written in Exodus 24:1 'And unto Moses He said, "Come up unto the Lord," instead of "Come up unto Me,"' the Amora answered that the verse refers to Metatron 'whose Name is like that of his Master.'" Scholem, p.377.
The Metatron in His Two-Handed form as the Universal Non-violent (Yajna) Sacrifice...THE LAMB OF GOD. (Isaiah 53).
"It was not Moses, but the Angel of the Covenant who led the children of Israel out of Egypt, and brought them into the promised land, for this Angel was in the pillar and in the cloud, according to the promise which God gave to Moses, our great teacher of blessed memory. In Exodus 23:20 we hear God saying, Behold, I send an angel before thee, to keep thee in the way, and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared. (see John 14:1-4)...The Great Mystery, How Can Three Be One, A Commentary on the Zohar, by Rabbi Tzvi Nassi, (pp.55,56).
THE MIDDLE PILLAR (in the Godhead) is the Metatron, who has accomplished peace above...(p.61).
My faithful teacher, R. Simeon ben Jochi, took me into one of the inner chambers of the mystery of the saving knowledge of God, and instructed me that Metatron existed from eternity. (see Colossians 1:3-20)...(p.63).
God said unto Moses, Come up unto the Lord (see Exodus 24:1, 12,13); this is Metatron. He is called by the name Metatron because in this name are implied two significations, which indicate his character. He is Lord and messenger. There is a third idea implied in the name Metatron: it signifies a Keeper; for in the Chaldee language, a keeper (or Watchman) is called "Matherath;" and because he is the Keeper (Preserver) of the world, he is called (Ps.121:4) "the Keeper of Israel." From the signification of his name we learn that he is Lord of all that is below; `because all the hosts of heaven and all things upon the earth are put under his Power and Might."...(p.61).
The Metatron in His Terrible Form as the ANGEL OF DIVINE PRESENCE and THE GOD OF WAR...(Exodus 15:3; Deuteronomy 32:16-29; Judges 5:13-15; Psalm 18:1-11; Isaiah 66:15-17; 2 Thessalonians 1:6-10)....And there be higher than they. (Ecclesiastes 5:8).
What could not be divulged straight out, for reasons we should be able to see by now, was committed to that very peculiar form of midrashim in which the New Testament is composed. These books must be opened and read in both directions, from the first century onwards, and from our time backwards. These books are not historical in the normal sense but in the epic sense. They are suprahistorical, and comply in every way with the Vedic, thus Kabbalistic doctrines of metempsychosis. Thus Paul, seeing his own spirit descending on the Tree of Life, and into the judgments of our times, says:
Behold, THE THIRD TIME I AM READY TO COME TO YOU; and I will not be burdensome to you; for I seek not yours but you...
But I fear, LEST WHEN I COME, I shall not find you such as I would, and I shall not be found of you such as ye would...
THIS IS THE THIRD TIME I AM COMING TO YOU (see Matthew 17:1-7). In the mouth of Two or Three Witnesses shall every word be established...(2 Corinthians 12:1 to 13:1).
For now we see through a glass darkly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then shall I know, even as I am known...(1 Cor.13:12).
Making request, if by any means now at length that I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.
For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;
That is, that I MAY BE COMFORTED TOGETHER WITH YOU (understand Isaiah 40:1-3), by the mutual faith both of you and me...(Romans 1:10-12).
Nevertheless I will tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart I will send him unto you.
And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
Of sin, because they believe not on me; Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; Of judgment, because the prince of the world is judged.
I have many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. (1 Corinthians 3:1,2).
Howbeit when the Spirit of truth is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he will not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak:: and he will shew you things to come.
And he shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine and shew it unto you. (2 Corinthians 3:18; Romans 8:18).
All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.
A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me, because I go to the Father (This is Paul speaking)...
Now Jesus (see Galatians 4:14; Hebrews 5:8-14) knew they were desirous to ask him, and said unto them, Do you enquire among yourselves of that I said, A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me?
Verily I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.
A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a child is born into the world...
These things that I have spoken unto you in proverbs: but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs, but I shall shew you plainly of the Father...(John 16:7-25).
In the light of these cryptic passages we can fathom Paul's other words which say: Till I come...(1 Timothy 4:13-16); The rest will I set in order when I come...(1 Cor.11:34); And I am sure that, when I come to you, I shall come in the fulness of the blessing of the Gospel of Christ. (Romans 15:29). My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you. (Galatians 4:19); A crown that he shall give me in that day. (2 Timothy 4:8, 18); Holding forth the word of Life, that I may rejoice in the day of the Lord. (Philippians 2:12-16):
There is one glory of the Sun, and another glory of the Moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differeth from another star in glory.
So also is the Resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption (from the Left side of the Tree); it is raised in incorruption (on the Right side of the Tree):
It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power...(1 Corinthians 15:41-43).
That I may know him, and the power of his Resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable to his death.
If by any means I might attain to the Resurrection of the dead.
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which I also I am apprehended of Jesus Christ...
Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in anything ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you...(Philippians 3:10-15).
And of course those words that convinced so many others that Paul expected the return of Christ in his own times:
THEN WE WHICH ARE ALIVE AND REMAIN shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air...(1 Thessalonians 4:17).
As we can see now, Paul is not speaking of himself in his times, but from the place on the Tree of Life named Majesty in our times, and apart from those who will be called upon to lay down their lives for these things on the other side of the Oracle--just as John the Baptist and others laid down their lives for these things at the place named Love. And then, because Paul knew that the people's sojourn here at the Western ends of the Earth would mirror Israel's sojourn in Egypt in ancient times (Genesis 15:13-16), we see that he is alluding to an allegorical description of Israel's deliverance from Egypt in the Book of Exodus--one which has also eluded those literalists in our times who are waiting to be physically lifted off the earth in a great "rapture," defying the laws of Nature, and leaving the rest of us here alone to suffer the tribulations of the last days. They are right in that respect: others will suffer the tribulations on their behalf. It will not be physical bodies that will be caught up as a result, however, but people's minds:
Ye have seen what I did to the Egyptians, AND HOW I BARE YOU ON EAGLE'S WINGS, and brought you unto myself.
Now therefore, if ye will obey My voice indeed (which is the Voice of Many Waters--many nations, many peoples), and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people, for all the earth is mine.
And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, an holy nation...
And Moses came and called for the elders of all the people, and laid before their faces all these words which the Lord commanded him.
And all the people answered together, and said, All that the Lord hath spoken we will do...
And the Lord said to Moses, Lo, I come unto thee in a Thick Cloud, that the people may hear when I speak unto thee, and believe thee forever. And Moses told the words of the people unto the Lord...(Exodus 19:4-9; Hebrews 12).
The following is one of the few remains of Israel ben Eliezer's (the founder of the modern Hasidic movement), own writings. Israel's life opened the way for Paul's spirit to descend again into our times--to a complete encounter with the Lunar, or Feminine side of the Tree of Life. His words reflected the exact meaning of Paul's words when he wrote:
"For on the day of the New Year...I engaged in an ascent of the soul, as you know that I do, and saw wonderous things in that vision that I never saw before since the day that I attained to maturity. That which I saw and learned in my ascent is impossible to describe or even relate from mouth to mouth. But as I returned to the lower garden of Eden I saw many souls, both of the living and of the dead, those known to me and those unknown. There were more than could be counted and they ran to and fro from world to world through the path provided by that column known to the adepts of the hidden science. They were all in such a state of GREAT RAPTURE, that the mouth would be worn out if it attempted to describe it, and the physical ear too delicate to hear it...
Many of the wicked repented of their sins and were pardoned, FOR IT WAS A TIME OF MUCH GRACE...It was a marvel that the repentance was accepted of so many you know. They also enjoyed great Rapture and ascended, as mentioned before. (see Revelation 12:5).
Thus all the worlds became united and they ascend so that immeasurable rapture and great delight is experienced. YOU CAN UNDERSTAND THIS IN THE ANALOGY OF THE RAPTURE OF THE BRIDE AND BRIDEGROOM IN THE PHYSICAL WORLD. HOW MUCH MORE AT THIS ELEVATED STAGE." The Mystical Epistle of the Baal Shem Tov.
Blow the Trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly.
Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts: let the Bridegroom go forth of his chambers, and the Bride out of her closet...(Joel 2:15,16).
How shall we magnify Zerub-babel? Even he was a signet on the Right Hand...(Ecclesiasticus 49:11).
Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I WILL BRING FORTH MY SERVANT THE BRANCH.
For behold THE STONE that I have laid before Joshua; upon One Stone shall be Seven Eyes: behold, I will engrave the graving thereof, saith the Lord of hosts, and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day...(Zechariah 3:8-10).
As the Tree of Life below is a reflection of the Divine Presence above, so the East-above is a reflection of the West-below. As the children of Israel and Judah were led away into the East, and into an Eastern state of mind in ancient times (eventually forsaking their own Center), so the people have been led away into the West and into an identical state of "spiritual" captivity in America in these last times. And just as America is the original Assyria...
And it shall come to pass in that day, that the great trumpet shall be blown, and they shall come which were ready to perish in the land of Assyria, and the outcasts in the land of Egypt, and they shall worship the Lord in the holy mount at Jerusalem...(Isaiah 27:13).
...so is it the original Chaldea, or Babylon. Thus Zerubbabel became another scriptural figure of the Messiah(s) who would lead the people out of captivity in the last day:
Give me authority when I ask you: Give healing for my body through the Evangelist, and redeem my eternal Light-soul and my spirit...Grant what no angel eye has seen or heard...(The Prayer of the Apostle Paul, The Nag Hammadi Library, p.27).
"The little child spoke, saying, 'I know who you are Paul. You are he who was blessed from his mother's womb. For I have come to you that you may go up to Jerusalem to your fellow Apostles. And for this reason you were called. And I am the spirit who accompanies you. Let your mind awaken...'
Then we went up to the Seventh Heaven and I saw an Old Man, (the Ancient of Days)...whose garments were white. His throne was on the Seventh Heaven, and brighter than the Sun by seven times. This Old Man spoke, saying to me, 'Where are you going Paul, O blessed one who was set apart from his mother's womb?' But I was looking at the Spirit, and he was nodding his head, saying to me, 'Speak with Him.' And I replied, saying to the Old Man, 'I AM GOING TO THE PLACE FROM WHICH I CAME.' And the Old Man responded to me, 'Where are you from?' But I replied, 'I AM GOING DOWN TO THE WORLD OF THE DEAD IN ORDER TO LEAD CAPTIVE THE CAPTIVITY THAT WAS CAPTIVE IN THE CAPTIVITY IN BABYLON.' The Old Man replied to me, saying, 'How will you be able to get away from me? Look and see the principalities and authorities.' The Spirit spoke, saying, 'Give him the sign which you have, and He will open for you.' And then I gave Him the sign. He turned His face downwards to His creation, and to those who are His own authorities (or powers)." The Apocalypse of Paul, The Nag Hammadi Library, pp.240-41.
Now why dost thou cry aloud? IS THERE NO KING IN THEE? Is thy counsellor perished? for pangs have taken hold of thee as a Woman in travail.
Be in pain, and labour to bring forth, O daughter of Zion, like a woman in travail; for now thou shalt go forth out of the City, and thou shalt dwell in the Field (the world), AND THOU SHALT GO, EVEN TO BABYLON, THERE SHALT THOU BE DELIVERED, there the Lord will redeem thee from the hands of thine enemies...(Micah 4:9,10).
But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah (House of Bread), though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall "he" come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from old, from everlasting.
Therefore will He give them up, until the time that she which travaileth hath brought forth: then the remnant of his brethren shall return unto the children of Israel.
And "he" shall stand and feed in the strength of the Lord, IN THE MAJESTY OF THE NAME OF THE LORD HIS GOD; and They shall abide: for now shall he be great unto the ends of the earth.
And this "man" shall be the peace, when THE ASSYRIAN shall come into our land (into our state of mind): when he shall tread in our palaces, then shall we raise against him Seven Shepherds (from Netsah) and Eight Principle Men (from Hod)...(Micah 5:2-5).
How then shall they (the Jews) call on him whom they have not believed? and how shall they (the Christians and all others) believe in him (DVD) of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
And how shall they (on the Left side of the Oracle) preach, except they be Sent? (Open the Book of Ezekiel), as it is written, How beautiful are the Feet of them that preach the Gospel of Peace, and bring glad tidings of good things...(Romans 10:14,15).
See Elisha ben Abuyah
Chapter 6, Ellijah and the Holy Name
Chapter 7, On the Name, Jesus (H)esus
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